Joseph Kable, PhD
Baird Term Professor in Psychology, University of Pennsylvania
I am interested in understanding how people make decisions, and in tracing out the underlying psychological and neural mechanisms of choice. Research in my lab employs an interdisciplinary approach, drawing on methods and ideas from social and cognitive neuroscience, experimental economics, and personality psychology. Recently we have used fMRI to show how the subjective value people place on immediate and delayed rewards is represented in a common neural currency. Some broad questions motivating our current research include: How seriously do people’s choices deviate from rational choice theory, and what do the neural value signals in such situations help explain about these deviations? How does decision making differ across individuals, and what are the sources—psychological, genetic, neural—of such individual differences?