Dr. Luis Sebastian Contreras-Huerta
My research focuses on understanding the neural and psychological mechanisms that underlie moral concern, altruism, and empathy. In particular, I am interested in what environmental and internal factors affect the decisions of an agent towards the well-being of others in moral contexts. In order to address these goals, I use methods from cognitive neuroscience, such as functional magnetic resonance (fMRI), together with computational modelling approaches, and behavioural paradigms.
Currently, I'm studying prosocial behaviour within a foraging context. Animals and humans many times must collect rewards (e.g. food) not only for themselves, but also to share with their community. Using models from behavioural ecology, I'm examining whether the same principles that underlie foraging for self rewards apply when the agent forages prosocially for others' rewards.