Commentary| Volume 72, ISSUE 2, P80-81, July 15, 2012

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The Scylla and Charybdis of Neuroeconomic Approaches to Psychopathology

  • P. Read Montague
    Address correspondence to P. Read Montague, Ph.D., Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, Department of Physics, Virginia Tech, 2 Riverside Circle, Roanoke, VA 24016
    Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, Department of Physics, Virginia Tech, Roanoke, Virginia

    Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging, University College London, London, United Kingdom
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      As neuroeconomics enters its second decade, it is fair to ask whether it represents a useful confluence of two disciplines or simply a compound word with aspirations to be much more. Neuroeconomics rests on two important assumptions: the first is the ideal rational agent model, which guides the definition of optimal decision making and the valuations that should underlie it. The second is that neuroimaging is capable of providing insights into the neurobiology of the decision-making process. This special issue attempts to stretch the methods and metaphors of neuroeconomics toward the characterization and understanding of psychiatric disorders.
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