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T&C Chen Center for Social and Decision Neuroscience Seminar

Thursday, February 4, 2021
10:00am to 11:00am
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Online Event
Values Encoded in Orbitofrontal Cortex Are Causally Linked to Economic Choices
Camillo Padoa-Schioppa, Professor of Neuroscience, Washington University in St. Louis,


Abstract: Classic economists proposed that economic choices rely on the computation and comparison of subjective values. This hypothesis continues to inform economic theory and experimental research, but behavioral measures are ultimately not sufficient to prove the proposal. Consistent with the hypothesis, when agents make choices, neurons in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) encode the subjective value of offered and chosen goods. Moreover, neuronal activity in this area suggests the formation of a decision. However, it is unclear whether these neural processes are causally related to choices. More generally, the evidence linking choices to value signals in the brain remains correlational. In my talk, I will present recent results showing that neuronal activity in OFC are causal to economic choices.

For more information, or if you are interested in attending this online seminar, please contact Liz Schroeder by email at eschroder@caltech.edu.