Joshua Greene is an experimental psychologist, neuroscientist, and philosopher. He studies infrastructure of complex thought, and moral judgment and decision-making, primarily using behavioral experiments and functional neuroimaging (fMRI). His other interests include religion and cooperation. He is the author of Moral Tribes: Emotion, Reason, and the Gap Between Us and Them.
Kirstan is interested in social cognition and the role it plays in how we make judgments about other people, especially in contexts involving stereotypes, prejudice, intergroup conflict, and dehumanization.
Regan studies neural representations of propositional attitudes and how the brain pairs the attitude (belief or desire) with the proposition it modifies.
Lucius is interested in questions at the intersection of psychology and moral philosophy with a focus on the theory and practice of effective altruism. Currently, he investigates why people often give to ineffective charities, how they morally value animals, and how they think about the long-term future of humanity. Before joining Harvard, he completed his PhD in experimental psychology at Oxford.
Dillon researches high-level and conscious cognition using neuroimaging, computational modeling, and behavioral methods. How does the brain implement our amazingly flexible ability to represent novel situations and to use these representations as the inputs to processes as diverse as intuitive physics and language production? Does this flexibility rely on a Language of Thought or conscious awareness? In his current work, he is investigating these questions primarily by using functional magnetic resonance imaging to study how the brain enables us to construct and manipulate novel, complex mental images.
Karen studies how impartial reasoning influences moral judgment and policy decisions. In other work, Karen is also interested in interpersonal processes in conflict management, and ethical questions regarding the automation of labor.
Evan’s research interests touch broadly on the intersection of economics and psychology. His research focuses on behavioral interventions designed to maximize the likelihood of conflict resolution, the psychological underpinnings of economic and moral decision-making, particularly as it relates to intergroup conflict, and the psychology of persuasion -- which involves both analyzing the contexts under which persuasion is most likely to happen and how to train individuals to defend themselves against nefarious forms of persuasion.
James’s research aims to detect the existence of recursive operations—that is, operations that give rise to additional instances of themselves—outside of the language system in human cognition.
Collaborating Graduate Student
Arunima is interested in studying the neural representations and cognitive mechanisms that facilitate moral decision-making, role of metacognition in enforcing moral norms, and the use of punishment as leverage to change thought and behavior.
Michał studies the potential of solitary and interactive moral reasoning to change moral beliefs and behavior. Is there anything specific about how cognitive biases like motivated reasoning, and dispositions like open-mindedness, manifest themselves in the moral domain? More broadly, he is interested in the contribution of relatively stable personal characteristics – including beliefs, values, traits and habits – to moral behavior, especially altruism. As the founding Program Director of the School of Education at the University of Warsaw, Michał hopes to eventually apply findings from these areas to moral education.
Past Graduate Students
Joe Paxton ‘14
Researcher at Google