USC neuroscientist to receive Prince of Asturias prize

d acknowledges scientific, technical, cultural, social and humanitarian work of international scope. We are extremely proud to have a scientist of Antonio's caliber as part of USC College's research enterprise."

Damasio's institute at USC will direct interdisciplinary research focusing on the connections between emotion, decision-making and creativity.

"The critical part of the activity of the institute is going deeper in the understanding of how emotions and reason interact to permit decision-making, both in the personal space and in the public space," Damasio said.

Given its wide scope, the institute's research projects could include faculty from almost every part of campus.

"Although every university pays some sort of lip service to interdisciplinarity, USC actually relishes interdisciplinarity," Damasio said. "When you look at the College and its structures and you think of the schools that surround the College right here on the campus - and I am not even including the medical school - you see a very rich environment where there are high-level specialists in many of the fields that I happen to be interested in."

Much of the institute's research will employ the functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) system in the Dornsife Neuroscience Imaging Center.

Hanna Damasio, the center's co-director, Damasio's spouse and longtime collaborator, is a renowned neuroscientist and author of two well-regarded reference texts, "Human Brain Anatomy in Computerized Images" and "Lesion Analysis in Neuropsychology."

Fundamental to the Damasios' research is their conviction that a proper understanding of emotion is crucial to one's development as a human being. Maturity requires a successful negotiation between reason, knowledge and the emotional pressures in everyday life, Antonio Damasio said.

"In order to achieve what is in fact a very, very difficult

Contact: Carl Marziali
University of Southern California

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