The Evens Foundation announced that The Evens Science Prize 2020 goes to Professor Karin Roelofs.
An excerpt from the announcement:
“The international expert jury of the Evens Science Prize 2020 decided unanimously to award the prize to Prof. Karin Roelofs for her research on acute stress responses, resilience in the face of traumatic events and the underlying neurocognitive mechanisms that shape how we react when confronted with these events.”
“Prof. Roelofs’ research has important implications for our understanding of how to design intervention programs aimed at training those imbued with societal responsibilities to exert effective control over their own behavioural responses when confronted with stress. The research aligns with the Evens Science Prize’s mission to further our understanding of human behaviour, with an emphasis on ethical aspects, cooperation and altruism.”
“The jury praised the work for its ambitious scope as well as for the richness of its measures and its careful design. Based on solid theoretical frameworks rooted in animal literature, such as freeze-fight-flight reactions, Prof. Roelofs research involved a longitudinal study comparing control participants and populations exposed to stress – in this case 340 Dutch police officers whose responses were studied over an extended period of time – and employed a wide variety of cognitive, physiological, hormonal, and imaging measures. The results demonstrated not only that the frontal lobe of the brain exerts control over emotional fight-or-flight responses in stressful situations but, crucially, that the extent of this modulation is predictive of long-term resilience.”