Decision-making refers to the ability of humans and other animals to choose between competing courses of action based on the relative value of their consequences. This capacity is, therefore, fundamentally integrative, melding the complex cognitive processes through which causal relations between actions and their consequences are encoded, retrieved, and maintained in working memory with the motivational processes establishing the value, or utility, of alternative actions or sequences of actions. Research in the Decision Neuroscience Lab at UNSW utilises mice and rats as well as healthy and abnormal human populations in an attempt to develop a translational approach to understanding the neural bases of this capacity relative to other aspects of action control. An overview of this research program will be presented focusing first on what basic science and preclinical studies have revealed about the major neural systems and local circuit processes involved together with examples of recent findings from rodent and human research projects revealing deficits in decision-making induced by specific psychiatric conditions.
Professor Bernard Balleine, “Human and rodent homologies in action control”; Dr Laura Bradfield, “State and value processes in rodent orbitofrontal cortex”; Dr Richard Morris, “The human frontostriatal network and dysfunctions of decision-making”.
Chairperson – Professor Simon Killcross (School of Psychology, Convenor Brain Sciences UNSW).
Monday 4 July, 4 pm to 5 pm; followed by refreshments.