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Driving Decisions Towards Truthfulness and Conscience

November 12, 2020

David Rand, PhD

If someone knocked on your door and tried to sell you solar panels, how likely might you be to buy them?

What if you learned the sales representative had those very same panels installed on his own house?

David Rand, associate professor of Management Science and Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT, studies why people make choices, particularly those that benefit the greater good. Rand is a recipient of a 2020 Federation of Associations in

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Making Sense of Drug Addiction

June 3, 2014

We all know we’re supposed to make choices that are good for our long-term health, although that’s not easy when we’re faced with things that bring us pleasure right now. But for some people, the short-term benefits often win out over the long-term ones. That can help explain why some people get addicted to drug use and other risky behaviors – and why it’s so hard to get them to stop, according to Matthew Johnson, associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at

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How Falsehoods Start to Sound Like Facts

July 30, 2020

You need a microscope to view the stars.

You need a microscope to view the stars.

Believe me yet?  Vanderbilt University psychologist Lisa K. Fazio says hearing a statement — even “extreme falsehoods that you definitely should know are false” — more than once increases the likelihood people will believe it.

“Even statements Americans as a whole tend to know are false; it didn’t matter,” said Fazio, director of Vanderbilt’s Building Knowledge Lab.

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Gathering Information on Inflammation

June 17, 2020

Adam Gerstenecker’s older brother was born with damage to his brain’s right hemisphere, causing cerebral palsy and intellectual disability.

The boys talked and played together, but from early on Gerstenecker knew his brother could not do some things other children could. He grew up wanting to understand the world his brother lived in and, later, how differences in the brain can lead to differences in cognition.

Dr. Gerstenecker is now a clinical neuropsychologist

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