Is decision-making driven by emotions or reason? The prevalent view in philosophy and economics is that choices are driven by one or the other. Studies of brain function, however, reveal a far more complex relationship. Researchers have found that the brain does not have an emotion ‘system’ that drives certain choices. Instead they have found that emotions influence cognitive function by altering processing in brain regions that support those functions. By measuring and manipulating emotions and brain function, we find that emotions have specific effects on unique aspects of decisions, and cannot be uniformly characterized as driving ‘irrational’ choices. We can see that emotions influence the assessment of subjective values in decision making and that the same techniques used to change emotions can also be used to alter choices. 

Simultaneous Arabic translation will be provided.

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