Society Awards

The Society for Neuroeconomics offers several awards and Fellowships.

Society for NeuroEconomics Early Career Award

2021 Winner

2021 Winner

Amitai Shenhav

Assistant Professor at the Dept. of Cognitive, Lintuistic & Psychological Sciences and the Carney Institute for Brain Science. Amitai received his B.A. from UC Berkeley in 2005 and his Ph.D. in Psychology at Harvard University in 2012, followed by a C.V. Starr Postdoctoral Fellowship at Princeton. His research is focused on examining the computational and neural mechanisms at the intersection between decision-making and cognitive control, with a particular focus on how people weigh the costs and benefits of engaging in cognitively demanding tasks. 

2021 Winner

2021 Winner

Cendri Hutcherson

Associate Professor, Canada Research Chair in Decision Neuroscience. Cendri Hutcherson is the director of the Toronto Decision Neuroscience Laboratory and an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Toronto with a cross-appointment to the Rotman School of Management. She received degrees in psychology from Harvard (B.A.) and Stanford (Ph.D.), and worked as a post-doctoral scholar studying neuroeconomics at the California Institute of Technology. Her research program applies computational modeling to behavior, eye tracking, EEG, and fMRI data, with the goal of understanding how we make decisions and why we sometimes make decisions we later regret.

Previous Early Career Award Winners

2020 – Oriel Feldman Hall & Ryan Webb
2019 – Catherine Hartley & Gregory Samanez Larkin
2018 – Molly Crockett & Uma Karmarkar
2017 – Agnieszka Tymula & Ian Krajbich
2016 – Tali Sharot, PhD & Vinod Venkatraman, PhD
2015 – Hilke Plassmann, PhD & Ming Hsu, PhD
2014 – Joseph Kable, PhD
2013 – Tim Behrens, PhD & Daphna Shohamy, PhD
2012 – Nathaniel Daw, PhD
2011 – Camillo Padoa Schioppa, PhD
2010 – Todd Hare, PhD
2009 – Ben Hayden, PhD

Best Dissertation Award

2021 Winner

2021 Winner

Dr. Vered Kurtz-David

“Investigation of Economic Inconsistency and Behavior, and their Neural Mechanisms”


I have recently finished my PhD at Prof. Dino Levy’s lab at Tel Aviv University. Currently, I am a Postdoctoral Fellow at Prof. Paul Glimcher’s lab at NYU Langone.

In my dissertation, I laid focus on inconsistent choice behavior. Humans are often inconsistent, hence irrational, when choosing among simple bundles of goods, even without changes to framing or context. However, the cognitive and neuronal mechanisms that give rise to these irrational behaviors are still unknown. Understanding how we choose is of central interest to neuroscience, psychology, economics, political science and other fields. I tackled this phenomenon from different perspectives.

First, I demonstrated that inconsistency might be rooted in inherent biological constraints. I showed that the deviations from rational choice arise in the same brain regions responsible for value computation, suggesting that inconsistency arises due to the stochastic nature of value computation. Next, I investigated the choice-dynamics of irrational choice using mouse-tracking techniques, to disentangle its value-based elements originating in value computation, from its motor-execution elements. I found that certain elements in the choice dynamics and basic motor traits, extracted from the mouse trajectories, can predict inconsistency levels. Finally, I examined how several aspects of experimental design activate different cognitive heuristics, which in turn, influence irrational choice.

Taken together, these findings suggest that some degree of irrationality is an integral feature of human decision-making, and perhaps should not be considered sub-optimal. It is affected by intrinsic elements, like noisy neural networks, as well as external elements, like the choice environment.


Paper of the Year Award

2021 Winner

2021 Winner

“Value-guided remapping of sensory cortex by lateral orbitofrontal cortex.” Banerjee A*, Parente G, Teutsch J, Lewis C, Voigt FF and Helmchen F (2020) Value-guided remapping of sensory cortex by lateral orbitofrontal cortex. Nature 585:245-250.

Abhishek (Abhi) Banerjee is a Senior Lecturer at Newcastle University, UK. Abhi did his D.Phil. at the University of Oxford as a Felix Scholar. He was a Simons Fellow at MIT and a Teaching Fellow in Neurobiology at Harvard University. He was then a Marie Curie Fellow and NARSAD Young Investigator at the University of Zürich. His lab is working on neural circuit mechanisms underlying flexibility of decision-making and how circuit dysfunctions arise in animal models of neurological disorders.

Best Talk and Best Poster Award

For Poster & Talk Presenters

Bring your best work because all presenters will automatically be reviewed for a Best Talk and Best Poster Award. A judging committee will review all presenters on their work and their presentation execution. The winner of each will earn $100 and will be featured in post conference communication and on the website.

Best Talk Award Winners

Best Talk Presenters

2021 –
Gold: Rafael Polania, University of Zurich
“Neural codes in early sensory areas maximize fitness”
Jonathan Schaffner, Philippe Tobler, Todd Hare
Silver: Haoxue Fan, Harvard University
“Trait somatic anxiety is associated with reduced exploration and underestimation of relative uncertainty”
Samuel Gershman, Elizabeth Phelps
Bronze: Valentin Wyart, Ecole Normale Superieure
“Imprecise learning drives variable but adaptive decisions under uncertainty in humans and artificial neural networks”

2020: Zhihao Zhang, University of California, Berkeley
“Retrieval-Constrained Valuation: Toward Prediction of Open-Ended Decisions”
Shichun Wang, Maxwell Good, Siyana Hristova, Andrew Kayser, Ming Hsu

2019: Brian Sweis, University of Minnesota
“Translational neuroeconomics in addiction: Species-specific similarities and differences in dysfunction between wanting vs liking among humans and mice.”
Jazmin Camchong, Samantha Abram, Sheila Specker, Kelvin Lim, Angus MacDonald, Mark Thomas, David Redish

2018: Sudeep Bhatia, University of Pennsylvania
“The space of decision models” 
Lisheng He, Wenjia Joyce Zhao

2017: Wouter Kool, Harvard University
“Neural and behavioral signatures of metacontrol in reinforcement learning”
Wouter Kool, Samuel Gershman, Fiery Cushman

2016: Daniel Kimmel, Columbia University
“Encoding of value and choice as separable, dynamic neural dimensions in orbitofrontal cortex”
Daniel Kimmel, Gamaleldin Elsayed, John Cunningham, William Newsome

2015: Tobias Kalenscher, Universität Düsseldorf, Germany
“Basolateral amygdala lesions abolish mutual reward preference in rats
Tobias Kalenscher, Marijn van Wingerden, Sandra Schäble, Julen Hernandez-Lallement

2014: Molly Crockett, University of Oxford, England
“How Serotonin and Dopamine Shape Moral Decision Making”
Crockett MJ, Siegel , Kurth- Nelson Z, Ousdal OT, Story GW, Dayan P, Dolan RJ

2013: Ritwik K Niyogi, Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit, UCL
“Some work and some play: a normative, microscopic approach to allocating time between work and leisure”
Ritwik K. Niyogi, Yannick-Andre Breton, Rebecca B. Solomon, Kent Conover, Peter Shizgal, Peter Dayan

Joe Kable, University of Pennsylvania
“From valuation to action: choice prediction in vmPFC and beyond”

2012: Tali Sharot, UCL
“Why Humans Discount Bad News: Findings from development, pharmacology and TMS”

Best Poster Award Winners

Best Poster Presenters

2021 –
Gold: Micah Edelson, University of Zurich
“Goal-dependent recalibration of hippocampal representations facilitates self-control”
Micah Edelson, Todd Hare
Silver: Nitisha Desai, Ohio State University
“Investigating the link between neural reward reactivity and attention”
Nitisha Desai, Allison Londerée, Eunbin Kim, Dylan Wagner, Ian Krajbich, Kentaro Fujita
Bronze: Marie Falkenstein, Sorbonne University
“Does COVID-related stress affect self-control and the ability to make healthy food choices”
Marie Falkenstein, Felix Nitsch, Leonie Koban, Aiqing Ling, Tobias Kalenscher, Hilke Plassmann

2020 Alexandre Filipowicz, University of Pennsylvania
“Using mobile eye-tracking to capture the effects of choice set size on information processing during purchase decisions in the field”
Alexandre Filipowicz, Laura Zaneski; M. Kathleen Caulfield; Quentin Andre; Eric Singler; Hilke Plassmann; Joseph Kable

2019: Jaime Castrellon, Duke University
“Individual differences in dopamine predict self-control of everyday desires”
Jaime Castrellon, David Zald, Gregory Samanez Larkin

2018: Jaime Castrellon, Duke University
“Parsing the role of dopamine in reward discounting and subjective valuation”
Jaime Castrellon, Gregory Samanez-Larkin

2017: Jan Zimmermann, New York University
“Adapting choice behavior and neural value coding in monkey orbitofrontal cortex”
Jan Zimmermann, Paul Glimcher, Kenway Louie

2016: Alireza Soltani, Dartmouth College
“Contributions of neural adaptation to value-based and perceptual choice”
Oihane Horno, Mehran Spitmaan, Alireza Soltani

2015: Alaa Ahmed, University of Colorado Boulder
“Effort, reward, and vigor in decision-making and motor control”
Authors: Reza Shadmehr, Helen Huang, Alaa Ahmed

2014: Cendri Hutcherson, California Institute of Technology
“Ethics or empathy? Different appraisals activate distinct social cognitive brain regions during altruistic choice”
Authors: Cendri Hutcherson & Antonio Rangel

2013: Raphaëlle Abitbol, Pantheon-Sorbonne University
Pre-stimulus brain activity predicts subjective valuation in monkeys and humans? “
Authors: R. Abitbol, M. Lebreton, G. Hollard, B. J. Richmond, S. Bouret, M. Pessiglione

2012: Ian Krajbich, The Ohio State University
“Thinking fast and slow ? The reverse-inference problem with reaction times?”
Authors: I. Krajbich, B. Bartling, T. Hare, E. Fehr

2011: Hilke Plassmann, INSEAD and Cognitive Neuroscience Unit INSERM & Ecole Normale Superieure & University of Toronto
“Is there a common “cost” currency system? Neural correlates of abstract and somatosensory costs during value integration”
Authors: Hilke Plassmann & Nina Mazar

2010: Jeffrey Cockburn, Cognitive, Linguistic and Psychological Sciences, Brown University
“Why (and how much) do we value the freedom to choose? Decision enhances spatial credit assignment in reinforcement learning “
Authors: Jeffrey Cockburn and Michael J. Frank

Thank you to our Sponsors

Platinum Sponsor

Gold Sponsors

stanford logo

Silver Sponsors