Richard Davidson received his PhD from Harvard University in Psychology and has been at Wisconsin since 1984. He has published more than 573 articles, numerous chapters and reviews, and edited 14 books. He is the author (with Sharon Begley) of “The Emotional Life of Your Brain,” published by Penguin in 2012. He is co-author with Daniel Goleman of “Altered Traits: Science Reveals How Meditation Changes Your Mind, Brain, and Body,” published by Penguin Books in 2017.
He is the recipient of numerous awards for his research, including the William James Fellow Award from the American Psychological Society. He was the year 2000 recipient of the most distinguished award for science given by the American Psychological Association – the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award. He was the Founding Co-Editor of the American Psychological Association journal EMOTION. In 2003 he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time Magazine in 2006. He served on the Scientific Advisory Board at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences from 2011-2019. He was a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Mental Health 2014-2018. In 2017 he was elected to the National Academy of Medicine and in 2018 appointed to the Governing Board of UNESCO’s Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development (MGIEP). In 2014, he founded the non-profit, Healthy Minds Innovations, which translates science into tools to cultivate and measure well-being. His research is broadly focused on the neural bases of emotion and emotional style and methods to promote human flourishing, including meditation and related contemplative practices.
Davidson is the Mind & Life Chief Scientific Advisor (CSA). The CSA is an accomplished senior scientist who has a long history with the Mind & Life Institute and has made substantial contributions to contemplative science. The CSA serves an advisory role on science-related programmatic matters of the Institute. Davidson served on the Mind & Life Board of Directors from 1992 to 2017.