Luke Chang, Dartmouth College

Neuroscience and Social Decision Making Series

Luke Chang is an Assistant Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Dartmouth College and directs the Computational Social Affective Neuroscience Laboratory. His research program is focused on understanding the neurobiological and computational mechanisms underlying social interactions. He is actively involved in the emerging fields of social, affective, and decision neurosciences and uses advanced models to understand how we learn and make decisions in social contexts and how pain and emotions can be regulated through social interactions.

“Affective motivations in social behavior”

Virtually every action requires some degree of social consideration. This might be the beliefs, feelings, or actions of another individual, or more broadly, the codes of conduct informed by cultural customs and social norms. My work seeks to understand how we integrate this complex social information with more self-interested motivations when making everyday decisions. For example, why do we tip restaurant servers, cab drivers, and coffee baristas? In this talk, I will present work that shows that we receive psychological payoffs in the form of emotions such as guilt that motivate us to minimize harming or disappointing our relationship partners. While these feelings can facilitate the development of close interpersonal relationships, they can also have significant psychological costs. For example, some people might be willing to exhaust all of their financial resources to save the life of loved one, child, or pet. Understanding the motivations that underlie these types of surrogate decisions has important implications for designing effective policies.
“Affective motivations in social behavior"
Wednesday, October 4, 2017 - 4:30pm
101 Peretsman Scully Hall
Hosted by: 
Zidong Zhao and Yeon Soon Shin
Princeton Neuroscience Institute
Neuroscience & Social Decision Making