How do we understand others?

What are the neural bases of our emotions?

How is our social behavior shaped by the brain?


These are just some of the questions the SCAN-Unit (Social, Cognitive, and Affective Neuroscience Unit) has been investigating since its formation in 2010. We are a group of international researchers who combine psychological theory with cutting edge neuroscientific methodology to study the biological basis of human's social and emotional life.

Our special research focus lies on the neuroscience of empathy. We have made and continue to make essential contributions to our understanding of how people share the feelings of others and take their point of view. This research enterprise is complemented by research activities in the fields of decision making, moral behavior, and mental health.

For further information on the research we do click here.

For information on our lab mission click here.




Machen gewalthaltige Videospiele weniger empathisch?

Lukas Lengersdorff spricht in einem Beitrag des SWR2-Impuls über den Einfluss von Videospielen auf die Empathie.

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Our latest paper shows the importance of effort costs when considering how prosocial behaviour changes under acute stress

How much effort is involved in helping others and our existing prosocial tendencies could be key to understanding acute stress effects on prosocial...


Emotionen lesen

In der Sendereihe "Die Antwort auf fast alles" von arte tv spricht Claus Lamm in Folge 42 - "Können wir Gedanken lesen?" über Emotionen.


für Migrationsforschung der ÖAW


New Paper published: Addressing Climate Change with Behavioral Science: A Global Intervention Tournament in 63 Countries

Effectively reducing climate change requires dramatic, global behavior change. Yet it is unclear which strategies are most likely to motivate people...


Wut & Rassismus

In einem Ö1-Beitrag spricht Claus Lamm über Wut und was passiert, wenn man sie permanent unterdrückt.


... ist neu eingerichtet worden. Was sie erforscht und wer zu ihr gehört, hat man uns freundlicherweise in diesem Portrait zusammengestellt: