How do we make decisions?

How do we feel about the outcomes?

Feelings of happiness and sadness are central to conscious experience, but we still know little about what happens in the brain when we have these feelings or how these feelings relate to the decisions we make.

In summer 2016, I am opening my new lab at University College London as a MRC Career Development Fellow. My lab will be located on Russell Square at the new Max Planck Centre for Computational Psychiatry and Ageing Research. I am also affiliated with the Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging.

My research combines computational modeling with neuroimaging, pharmacology, and neurophysiology to study the relationship between decisions and emotions across the lifespan and in people with depression. I developed a computational and neural model of happiness that links rewards and expectations to subjective feelings and to dopamine:

I helped develop the smartphone app The Great Brain Experiment. Download it for iPhone or Android to contribute to our research!

Key collaborators:  Ray Dolan (UCL) and Peter Dayan (UCL).

Clinical collaborators: Roland Zahn (Kings), Peter Fonagy (UCL), Chadi Abdallah (Yale), and John Krystal (Yale).

Contact: robb.rutledge (at)