Mind & Life Fellows are distinguished leaders in their respective field who have made significant contributions to the mission and vision of the Mind & Life Institute and more broadly to contemplative sciences, studies and practice through her/his  scholarship, activities and influence.


Inaugurated in 2009, the first Fellows were given their designation based on contributions to Mind & Life programs. Since that time and with the growth of our field, Fellowship has matured beyond a simple designation. Today, the Mind & Life Fellows Program is a formal effort to mobilize and engage a global network of notable scientists, scholars, changemakers and contemplative practitioners. Fellows represent diverse disciplines, sectors and traditions, though all are aligned with the Mind & Life Institute’s mission, vision and core values.

What is a Mind & Life Fellow?

Fellows are selected for this honor based on their exemplary work and are not required to fulfill specific duties, yet are encouraged to support and serve Mind & Life in ways that meaningfully resonate. Most importantly, Fellows provide critical insight and service to Mind & Life programs, communications, and community-building initiatives. 

Types of Mind & Life Fellows

  • Research Fellow – A  researcher—scientific (basic, clinical or social sciences) or humanistic scholar—engaged in contemplative sciences and/or studies.
  • Changemaker Fellow– A thought leader or changemaker who facilitates application of contemplative interventions into real-world settings.
  • Contemplative Fellow – A contemplative teacher and practitioner who engages in dialogue with scientists and scholars.

Principles of the Fellows Program

  • Honorary fellowship to select group of experts from multiple disciplines who have contributed significantly to the Mind & Life mission and broader community.
  • Service in the Fellows Program is strictly voluntary.
  • Fellows are tenured for life.
  • No formal time commitment is required of Fellows, unless a Fellow is asked to join a specific Mind & Life program or activity, for which time expectations are delineated.

Benefits of Being a Mind & Life Fellow

  • Engage and collaborate with a global network of influential leaders committed to contemplative scholarship and practice.
  • Meet and mentor other contemplative scientists, scholars and practitioners.
  • Receive recognition and have your work highlighted in Mind & Life communications.

Eligibility Criteria to be a Mind & Life Fellow

  1. Has made significant contributions as a researcher, changemaker or a contemplative to the mission and vision of the Mind & Life Institute and more broadly to contemplative sciences, studies and practice through her/his scholarship, activities and influence. The nominee, for example:
    • Has directly or indirectly contributed to the field of contemplative sciences through studies and publications demonstrating significant or novel theoretical, experimental or action-based research.
    • Has been involved in or pioneered contemplative wisdom based action in a community or a global scale.
    • Has intentionally and explicitly set out to diversify the demographic reach of contemplative sciences and practices. Has championed the integration of values of equity, diversity and inclusion in their contemplative action or research.
  2. Is or has been involved with the Mind & Life Institute extensively in any of the following capacities.
    • Has been an invited presenter at a Mind & Life program. Invited presenters include plenary faculty, contemplative faculty, discussants, artists, etc.
    • Has served as a member of a Mind & Life Institute committee (Program Planning Committee, Grant Review, Steering Council, Board, SRI Review Committee, etc.).
    • Has partnered or collaborated on a Mind & Life program or grant.
  3. Exemplifies qualities that align with the Mind & Life mission, vision, and core values (compassion, integrity, curiosity, inclusion and excellence). 

Nominating a New Fellow

The Mind & Life Institute is committed to building a rigorous community of interdisciplinary contemplatives, scholars and scientists which depends upon diversity of perspectives and experiences. Candidates for Mind & Life Fellows are nominated by current fellows and are from diverse backgrounds, i.e. various races, ethnicities, genders, ages, faith traditions and spiritual orientations, physical abilities, geographic locations, and academic and professional disciplines.

Please note that only current Mind & Life Fellows and staff members at the Mind & Life Institute are eligible to nominate others who meet the criteria for being a Fellow. Mind & Life Fellows are encouraged to nominate new Fellows who would contribute to the diverse global network of distinguished Mind & Life Fellows across the three different types of fellowship: Research, Changemaker and Contemplative using this form. Nominations for 2021 Fellows will open on October 18, 2021 and close on November 19, 2021.

If you have any suggestions or questions regarding these revisions to the Fellows program, or about future directions of the program, please direct your query to fellows@mindandlife.org.

Current Mind & Life Fellows

Adam Anderson, Ph.D.
Cornell University

Elena Antonova, Ph.D.
Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London, UK

Joanna Arch, Ph.D.
University of Colorado–Boulder

James Austin, Ph.D.

Anthony Back, M.D.
University of Washington

Daniel Barbezat, Ph.D.
Amherst College

Larry Barsalou, Ph.D.
University of Glasgow, Institute of Neuroscience and Psychology

Dan Batson, Ph.D.
University of Kansas (retired)

Susan Bauer-Wu, Ph.D., R.N., FAAN
Mind & Life Institute, President

Peter Baumann
The Baumann Foundation

Kent Berridge, Ph.D.
University of Michigan

Mark Bertolini, MBA
Former Chairman, Aetna Inc.

Michel Bitbol, Ph.D.
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, France

Bhikkhu Bodhi, Ph.D.
The Bodhi Monastery

Sarah Bowen, Ph.D.
Pacific University

Julie Brefczynski-Lewis, Ph.D.
West Virginia University

Judson Brewer, M.D., Ph.D.
Brown University

Willoughby Britton, Ph.D.
Brown University

John Canti, M.A., M.B., B.Chir.
Tsadra Foundation

Linda Carlson, Ph.D.
University of Calgary, Canada

Ram-Prasad Chakravarthi, D.Phil.
Lancaster University, UK

Doris Chang, Ph.D.
New York University

Alejandro Chaoul, Ph.D.
Jung Center’s Mind Body Spirit Institute

Diana Chapman Walsh, Ph.D.
Wellesley College, President Emerita

Khen Rinpoche Jangchup Choeden, Abbot
Gaden Shartse Monastery, India

Kalina Christoff, Ph.D.
University of British Columbia, Canada

John Christopher, Ph.D.

George P. Chrousos, M.D.
University of Athens Medical School, Greece

Dekila Chungyalpa, M.A.
World Wildlife Fund
Yale University 2014 McCluskey Fellow

Jim Coan, Ph.D.
University of Virginia

Paul Condon, Ph.D.
Southern Oregon University

Lisette Cooper, Ph.D.
Athena Capital Advisors

J. David Creswell, Ph.D.
Carnegie Mellon University

Geshe Dorji Damdul, Geshe
Tibet House, India

Nilanjana “Buju” Dasgupta, Ph.D.
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Richard Davidson, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin–Madison

Martin Davidson, Ph.D.
University of Virginia

Marc-Henri Deroche, Ph.D.
Kyoto University

Gaelle Desbordes, Ph.D.
Mind & Life Institute

Sona Dimidjian, Ph.D.
University of Colorado

James R. Doty, M.D.
Stanford University

Andrew Dreitcer, Ph.D.
Claremont School of Theology

Georges Dreyfus, Ph.D.
Williams College

John Dunne, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin–Madison

John Durant, Ph.D.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Jacquelynne Eccles, Ph.D.
University of California–Irvine

Stuart Eisendrath, M.D.
University of California-San Francisco

Paul Ekman, Ph.D.
University of California–San Francisco, (retired);
Paul Ekman Group (PEG), LLC

Eve Ekman, Ph. D.
University of California- San Francisco

Adam Engle
Mind & Life Institute, President Emeritus

Elissa Epel, Ph.D.
University of California–San Francisco

Monique Ernst, Ph.D.
National Institutes of Health

Michael Eze, Ph.D.
University of Cambridge, University of Amsterdam

Norman Farb, Ph.D.
University of Toronto, Canada

Wendy Farley, Ph.D.
San Francisco Theological Seminary

Ernst Fehr, Ph.D.
University of Zurich, Switzerland

Lisa Feldman Barrett, Ph.D.
Northeastern University

Brent Field, Ph.D.
Princeton University

Wulstan Fletcher
Tsadra Foundation

Vibeke Asmussen Frank, Ph.D.
Aarhus University, Denmark

Barbara Fredrickson, Ph.D.
University of North Carolina

Richard Freeman
Yoga Workshop

David Fresco, Ph.D.
Kent State University

Rahul Garg, Ph.D.
Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, India

Eric Garland, Ph.D.
University of Utah College of Social Work

Raymond L. Gellein, Jr., M.B.A.
Mind & Life Institute, Vice Chair, Treasurer

Bill George, M.B.A.
Harvard Business School

David Germano, Ph.D.
University of Virginia

Rupert Gethin, Ph.D.
University of Bristol, UK

Philippe Goldin, Ph.D.
University of California, Davis

Joseph Goldstein
Insight Meditation Society

Daniel Goleman, Ph.D.
Psychologist, Author

Sherryl Goodman, Ph.D.
Emory University

Marcia Grabowecky, Ph.D.
Northwestern University

Mark Greenberg, Ph.D.
Penn State University

Peter Grossenbacher, Ph.D.
Naropa University

Paul Grossman, Ph.D.
University Hospital Basel, Switzerland

Tho Ha Vinh, Ph.D.
Gross National Happiness Centre, Bhutan

Joan Halifax, Ph.D., Roshi
Upaya Zen Center

Diego Hangartner, PharmD
Institute of Mental Balance and Universal Ethics

Bill Harbaugh, Ph.D.
University of Oregon

Anne Harrington, Ph.D.
Harvard University

Wendy Hasenkamp, Ph.D.
Mind & Life Institute

Maria Heim, Ph.D.
Amherst College

Barry Hershey, M.F.A.

Zara Houshmand
Author, Translator

Yoshiro Imaeda, Ph.D.
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, France

Daniel Irurah, Ph.D.
University of the Witwatersrand

Carolyn Jacobs, Ph.D.
Dean Emerita, Smith School for Social Work

Patricia (Tish) Jennings, Ph.D.
University of Virginia

Amishi Jha, Ph.D.
University of Miami

Thupten Jinpa Langri, Ph.D.
Institute for Tibetan Classics, Canada
Mind & Life Institute, Chair

Bryce Johnson, Ph.D.

Grant Jones
Harvard University, Black Lotus Collective

Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D.
University of Massachusetts Medical School

Rajesh Kasturirangan, Ph.D.
National Institute of Advanced Studies, India

Al Kaszniak, Ph.D.
University of Arizona

Catherine Kerr, Ph.D. (Deceased)
Brown University

Barry Kerzin
Altruism in Medicine Institute

Shinobu Kitayama, Ph.D.
University of Michigan

Anne Klein, Ph.D.
Rice University

Christof Koch, Ph.D.
California Institute of Technology

Louis Komjathy, Ph.D.
Independent Scholar-Educator and Translator

Elisa Kozasa, Ph.D.
Instituto Israelita de Ensino e Pesquisa Albert Einstein
Universidade  Federal de São Paulo, Brazil

Linda Lantieri, M.A.
Inner Resilience Program

Brooke Lavelle, Ph.D.
Courage of Care

Richard Layard, Ph.D.
London School of Economics, UK

Marc Lewis, Ph.D.
Retired Author

Sara Lewis, Ph.D.
Naropa University

Geshe Lhakdor, Geshe
Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, India

Diana Liverman, Ph.D.
University of Arizona

Antoine Lutz, Ph.D.
Inserm, France

Richard Maddock, M.D.
University of California, Davis

Rhonda Magee, M.A., J.D.
University of San Francisco School of Law

John Makransky, Ph.D.
Boston College

Jennifer Mascaro, Ph.D.
Emory University School of Medicine

Erin McCarthy, Ph.D.
St. Lawrence University

Sara McClintock, Ph.D.
Emory University

Sallie McFague, Ph.D.
Vancouver School of Theology, Canada

David McMahan, Ph.D.
Franklin & Marshall College

Wolf Mehling, Ph.D.
University of California- San Fransisco

Konda Mason
Spirit Rock Center

David Meyer, Ph.D.
University of Michigan

Donald Morrison, M.B.A.
Research in Motion (Retired)

Yoshio Nakamura, Ph.D.
University of Utah

Geshe Dadul Namgyal
Emory University

Geshe Lobsang Tenzin Negi, Ph.D.
Emory University
Drepung Losling Monastery

Lis Nielsen, Ph.D.
National Institute on Aging, NIH

Gregory Norris, Ph.D.
Harvard University

Andrew Olendzki, Ph.D.
Barre Center for Buddhist Studies

Brendan Ozawa-DeSilva, Ph.D.
Emory University

Chikako Ozawa-DeSilva, Ph.D.
Emory University

Giuseppe Pagnoni, Ph.D.
University of Modena, Italy

Ken Paller, Ph.D.
Northwestern University

Clare Palmer, D.Phil.
Texas A&M University

Sharon Parks, Th.D.
Leadership for the New Commons

Bobbi (Barbara) Patterson, Ph.D.
Emory University

Luiz Pessoa, Ph.D.
University of Maryland

Claire Petitmengin, Ph.D.
Institut Mines-Telecom, France

Sheryl Petty, Ed.D.
Equity, Personal Transformation & Systems Change Consultant
Movement Tapestries, LLC

john powell, J.D.
University of California–Berkeley

Cynthia Price, Ph.D.
University of Washington

Charles Raison, M.D.
University of Wisconsin–Madison

Vijayalakshmi Ravindranath, Ph.D.
Center for Neuroscience, Indian Institute of Science, India

Laura Rendón, Ph.D.
University of Texas-San Antonio

Matthieu Ricard, Ph.D.
Shechen Monastery, Nepal

Tsoknyi Rinpoche
Pundarika Foundation

Andreas Roepstorff, Ph.D.
Aarhus University, Denmark

Robert Roeser, Ph.D.
The Pennsylvania State University

Erika Rosenberg, Ph.D.
University of California, Davis; Erika Rosenberg Consulting

Harold Roth, Ph.D.
Brown University

Bunker Roy
Barefoot College, India

Baljinder Sahdra, Ph.D.
Australian Catholic University, Australia

Sharon Salzberg
Insight Meditation Society

Geshe Ngawang Samten
Central University of Tibetan Studies, India

Saki Santorelli, Ed.D.
University of Massachusetts Medical School (Retired)

Cliff Saron, Ph.D.
University of California, Davis

Kimberly Schonert-Reichl, Ph.D.
University of British Columbia, Canada

Zindel Segal, Ph.D.
University of Toronto, Canada

Pamela Seigle, Ph.D.
Wellesley College

Peter Senge, Ph.D.
MIT Sloan School of Management

Catherine Shaddix, M.A.
UCSF Osher Center for Integrative Medicine
Baywell Psychiatry Group

Bennett Shapiro, Ph.D.
Merck Research Laboratories (retired)

Robert Sharf, Ph.D.
University of California–Berkeley

Shinsuke Shimojo, Ph.D.
California Institute of Technology

Joan Silk, Ph.D.
University of California–Los Angeles

Tania Singer, Ph.D.
Social Neuroscience Lab, Max Planck Society, Germany

Wolf Singer, M.D., Ph.D.
Ernst Strüngmann Institute (ESI)
Max Planck Institute for Brain Research, Germany

Theo Sowa, M.A.
African Women’s Development Fund

Michael Spezio, Ph.D.
Scripps College

Aaron Stern
Academy for the Love of Learning

P.N. Tandon, Ph.D.
President, National Brain Research Center, India

Ed Taylor
University of Washington

Mary Taylor
Yoga Workshop

Evan Thompson, Ph.D.
University of British Columbia, Canada

Hilary Tindle, M.D., MPH
Vanderbilt – Ingram Cancer Center

John Tresch, Ph.D.
University of Pennsylvania

Jeanne Tsai, Ph.D.
Stanford University

David Vago, Ph.D.
Vanderbilt University

Martijn van Beek, Ph.D.
University of Aarhus, Denmark

Nicholas Van Dam, Ph.D.
University of Melbourne

William Waldron, Ph.D.
Middlebury College

B. Alan Wallace, Ph.D.
Santa Barbara Institute for Consciousness Studies

Kirk Warren Brown, Ph.D.
Virginia Commonwealth University

Peter Wayne, Ph.D.
Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Helen Weng, Ph.D.
University of California–San Francisco

Rona Wilensky, Ph.D.
PassageWorks Institute

Carol Worthman, Ph.D.
Emory University

Arthur Zajonc, Ph.D.
Amherst University (retired)

Vicki Zakrzewski, Ph.D.
Greater Good Science Center

Fadel Zeidan, Ph.D.
Wake Forest School of Medicine

Phil Zelazo, Ph.D.
University of Minnesota