Decision making is a core aspect of human behaviors and the ability to make good choices is necessary for personal health and happiness as well as the efficient functioning of society as a whole. Our goal is to understand the neural mechanisms of decision making in healthy, typical populations as well as how these processes become dysfunctional in specific behavioral disorders and pathophysiologies.
My previous research has examined the neural networks that mediate decision making for various reward types (primary, monetary, social). We have shown that while key areas of the decision network are recruited across choice domains, the regions with which they interact differ between decision contexts. Furthermore, we have demonstrated differences in the neural networks that mediate choice in individuals who successfully employ self-control compared to those with self-control failures.
Using a combination of behavioral, neuroimaging, brain stimulation, and computational modeling techniques, I am presently studying the impact of factors such as stress, social feedback, and attention on both self-control and normative decision making.
Selected key publications
Hare TA, Malmaud J, Rangel A (2011) Focusing attention on the health aspects of foods changes value signals in vmPFC and improves dietary choice. The Journal of Neuroscience 31(30):11077-11087.
Hare TA, Schultz W, Camerer CF, O'Doherty JP, Rangel A (2011) Transformation of stimulus value signals into motor commands during simple choice. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 108(44):18120-18125.
Hare TA, Camerer CF, Knoeple DT, O’Doherty JP, Rangel A (2010) Value computations in vmPFC during charitable decision-making incorporate input from regions involved in social cognition. The Journal of Neuroscience 30(2):583-590.
Hare TA, Camerer C, Rangel A (2009) Self-control in decision-making involves modulation of the vmPFC valuation system. Science 324(5927):646-648.
Hare TA, O’Doherty J, Camerer C, Schultz W, Rangel A (2008) Dissociating the role of the orbitofrontal cortex and the striatum in the computation of goal values and prediction errors. The Journal of Neuroscience 28(22):5623-5630.