Should I tell the world that I like a post on Facebook? What movie would I rather watch right now? Should I have one more pint of beer, or have I had enough? How much should I share with others? Should I borrow from my future self to buy something right now? Is it worth the risk to try something that looks fun but dangerous?
Research in my lab seeks to understand how people, using their brains, make these kinds of decisions. Our specific focus tends to be on what we call “value-based”, “economic”, or “preferential” decisions, but we draw on knowledge from other domains of psychology and neuroscience to inform this work. Thus we often find ourselves asking questions about attention, perception, memory, and other neural mechanisms.
To answer these questions, my lab brings together economists, psychologists and neuroscientists (among others) using different tools such as eye-tracking, response times, brain imaging, brain stimulation, computational modeling, and patients with psychological or brain disorders.