Center For Investigating Healthy Minds

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About Center For Investigating Healthy Minds

What if our world were a kinder, wiser, more compassionate place? A place where we exercise our minds just like we exercise our bodies? A place where transforming your mind not only improves your own well-being, but cascades to the well-being of others in your community and around the globe?

We’re making this vision a reality at the Center for Healthy Minds at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Faced with mental and physical health challenges at a global scale, we conduct rigorous scientific research to bring new insights and tools aimed at improving the well-being of people of all backgrounds and ages.

Our research, rooted in neuroscience, comes down to one basic question: What constitutes a healthy mind?To begin to answer this, we’ve investigated the science of emotions, contemplative practices and qualities of mind we suspect affect well-being, including attention, resilience, equanimity, savoring positive emotions, kindness, compassion, gratitude and empathy. The Center, part of one of the world’s top research institutions, benefits from cross-disciplinary collaborations in the arts and humanities, the physical and natural sciences, and the social sciences. We take pride in being a global hub for innovations in affective and contemplative neuroscience in addition to well-being across the lifespan.

FOUNDER OF THE CENTER FOR HEALTHY MINDS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN–MADISON

Davidson is best known for his groundbreaking work studying emotion and the brain. A friend and confidante of the Dalai Lama, he is a highly sought after expert and speaker, leading conversations on well-being on international stages such as the World Economic Forum, where he serves on the Global Council on Mental Health. Time Magazine named Davidson one of “The 100 Most Influential People in the World” in 2006.

His research is broadly focused on the neural bases of emotion and emotional style as well as methods to promote human flourishing, including meditation and related contemplative practices. His studies have centered on people across the lifespan, from birth through old age. In addition, he’s conducted studies with individuals with emotional disorders such as mood and anxiety disorders and autism, as well as expert meditation practitioners with tens of thousands of hours of experience. His research uses a wide range of methods including different varieties of MRI, positron emission tomography, electroencephalography and modern genetic and epigenetic methods.

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