How does the brain make decisions? Courses and curses of choices.

The Max Planck Forum in Cooperation with the Consulate General of the State of Israel for Southern Germany

  • Due to the Corona Crisis the Max Planck Forum will unfortunately not take place!
  • Date: Apr 23, 2020
  • Time: 07:00 PM - 09:00 PM (Local Time Germany)
  • Speaker: Peter Dayan (MPI for Biological Cybernetics), Nira Liberman (Tel Aviv University), Hagai Bergman (Hebrew University Jerusalem)
  • Location: Max Planck Institute for Psychiatry, Kraepelinstr. 2, 80804 Munich
  • Room: Lecture Hall
  • Host: Max Planck Society in cooperation with the Consulate General of the State of Israel
  • Contact:
How does the brain make decisions? Courses and curses of choices.
The brain is still a mysterious organ. One of its most important functions is making decisions – but how does it do this? And what happens when decision-making goes wrong? The Max Planck Forum in cooperation with the Israeli Consulate General will address both these questions in April, integrating perspectives from neuroscience, psychology and neurology.

Peter Dayan studies reinforcement learning – how we learn to make choices that lead to rewards and avoid punishments. Nira Liberman works at the interface between motivation and cognition, encompassing, amongst other conditions, the particularly intractable obsessive compulsive disorder. Hagai Bergman, a Doctor of Medicine, explores the basal ganglia, a part of the brain richly implicated in decision-making, and a primary site for debilitating psychiatric and neurological diseases. After short presentations, the scientists will answer questions to discuss in greater depth what they have already unraveled and the huge wealth of questions still to be tackled.

Keynotes and discussion:

Dr. Peter Dayan, Managing Director and Head of the department Computational Neuroscience at Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics

Prof. Nira Liberman, School of Psychological Sciences, Gershon H. Gordon Faculty of Social Sciences, Tel Aviv University

Prof. Hagai Bergman, Dept. Medical Neurobiology, Institute for Medical Research, IMRIC, Hebrew University School of Medicine, Jerusalem

Chair: Monika Seynsche, Science Journalist



Registration by 16 April 2020


Please note that for security reasons

  • Bring along your passport or identify card.
  • No large bags or laptops may be carried.

With your participation, you consent to the recording, storage and publication of connected video and audio material.

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