Antonio Damasio is a Portuguese-American neuroscientist and university professor. He is currently the David Dornsife Professor of Neuroscience, Psychology and Philosophy at the University of Southern California and an adjunct professor at the Salk Institute. Damasio heads the Brain and Creativity Institute, and has authored several books: his most recent work, Self Comes to Mind: Constructing the Conscious Brain (2010), explores the relationship between the brain and consciousness.Damasio's research in neuroscience has shown that emotions play a central role in social cognition and decision-making
Antonio Damasio's research in neuroscience has shown that emotions play a central role in social cognition and decision-making. His work has had a major influence on current understanding of the neural systems, which underlie memory, language, consciousness.
Damasio studied medicine at the University of Lisbon Medical School, where he also did his neurological residency and completed his doctorate. For part of his studies, he researched behavioral neurology under the supervision of Norman Geschwind of the Aphasia Research Center in Boston.
Damasio's main field is neurobiology, especially neural systems which subserve emotion, decision-making, memory, language and consciousness. Damasio might believe that emotions play a critical role in high-level cognition—an idea counter to dominant 20th-century views in psychology, neuroscience and philosophy.
Damasio formulated the somatic marker hypothesis, a theory about how emotions and their biological underpinnings are involved in decision-making (both positively and negatively, and often non-consciously). Emotions provide the scaffolding for the construction of social cognition and are required for the self processes which undergird consciousness. Damasio provides a contemporary scientific validation of the linkage between feelings and the body by highlighting the connection between mind and nerve cells ... this personalized embodiment of mind."