James Livermore


I’m a postdoctoral researcher in the EPAN lab, based in the Donders Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging. I come from a background of cognitive neuroscience and behavioural economics, with particular interests in computational and pharmacological approaches to understanding decisions. My first masters was in economics at University of Warwick (UK), in which my dissertation looked at agent-based simulation of behavioural game theoretic models. Following this I worked for a period in econometric consulting, before completing a masters in cognitive neuroscience and then a PhD at the University of Sussex (UK). My PhD was supervised by Dr Daniel Campbell-Meiklejohn and involved collaborations with Prof Hugo Critchley, Prof Sarah Garfinkel and Dr Steve Fleming. In this work we examined the behavioural and neural effects of pharmacological challenge using serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors on a variety of interrelated processes. These included decision making and learning in individual and social contexts, as well as cardiac interoception, interoceptive and exteroceptive metacognition.


My research in the EPAN looks at the effects of threat and the contribution of physiological responses on decision making and probabilistic learning, both in the healthy brain and under pharmacological challenge. With this research we’re aiming to develop insights into the neurobiological and computational mechanisms underpinning an individual’s response to danger in the environment. As these mechanisms may become dysfunctional in anxiety and related disorders, our work potentially paves the way to a better understanding of clinical disorders and their treatment.