Principal investigators

Masahiko Haruno

Computational Social Neuroscience

Main Lab Location:

CiNet (Main bldg.)

Other Affiliations:

Visiting Professor, Graduate School of Frontier Biosciences, Osaka University.

Mailing Address:

1-4 Yamadaoka, Suita City Osaka, 565-0871


mharuno at


My research aims to characterize human social behavior and the underlying neural computations that support it. As social creatures, interactions with other humans command much of our daily life, and are critically related to a number of psychiatric disorders.

Our research focuses on identifying the precise mechanisms of how cortical and subcortical brain networks interact to support our social behaviour. We also have a set of studies probing the role of unconscious processing in social decision-making. On the basis of this, we are now developing what we think are the core algorithmic principles that underlie social computations, and we are using this a common framework for a integrated program of research spanning behavioural studies, 3T and 7T fMRI neuroimaging experiments, non-human primate data, and gene analysis. This approach permits a quantitative analysis and prediction of social behavior, based on its underlying neural network activity.

Recently, we’ve been testing the predictions of our model in real-world social interactions, for instance by seeing to what extent we can understand social behaviour on the internet, such as through Twitter and Facebook.

Selected Publications:

Haruno M. & Frith C. (2010) Activity in the amygdala elicited by unfair divisions predicts social value orientation. Nat Neurosci. 13(2):160-161.

Enomoto K, Matsumoto N, Nakai S, Satoh T, Sato TK, Ueda Y, Inokawa H, Haruno M, Kimura M. (2011) Dopamine neurons learn to encode the long-term value of multiple future rewards. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 108:15462-7.

Watanabe N. SakagamiM. Haruno M. (2013) Reward Prediction Error Signal Enhanced by Striatum-Amygdala Interaction Explains the Acceleration of Probabilistic Reward Learning by Emotion J Neurosci. 33:4487-4493.

Haruno M, Kimura M, Frith C. (2014) Activity in the Nucleus Accumbens and Amygdala Underlies Individual Differences in Prosocial and Individualistic Economic Choices J Cognitive Neuroscience. (in press).

Lab Members:

Kazuma Mori
・Kazuki Enomoto
・Toshiko Tanaka

・Syotaro Numano
・Skoullou・Lamprou Aglaia・Eleni
・Hayato Murakami
・Mao Fujiwara

Technical Staff
・Satoshi Tada
・Koji Uji
・Michiko Hattori