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MY MISSION

I am dedicated to advancing scientific understanding while also addressing pressing social challenges. My work is driven by a dual mission: to push the frontiers of knowledge in brain science and to translate these discoveries into tangible benefits for mental health care. By integrating innovative technologies with clinical practice, I aim to build bridges within the scientific community and create real-world applications that improve people's lives.

My social mission is to help:​ 

 1. Overcome the stigma of mental health conditions

 2. Improve current neurocognitive tests

 3. Personalize and develop treatments

My scientific mission is to:

 1. Integrate computational models across analytical levels

 2. Develop wholistic assessments across multiple cognitive and social domains 

 3. Translate research into practical tools

MY RESEARCH PROGRAM

How do biopsychological processes of hierarchical control, combined with social-affective processes, contribute to mental flexibility?

Pursuing the above question, I investigate the adaptation of behavioral and biopsychological patterns across contexts and over different time scales. I examine how these adaptations can lead to persistent mental states, often labeled as different mental health conditions when they become a daily burden. Currently, I'm developing a digital platform designed to holistically assess mental flexibility beyond traditional neurocognitive tests. By leveraging advanced AI technology, this platform aims to connect scientists, clinicians, and the public to enhance productivity and mental resilience, particularly benefiting individuals with ADHD, anxiety, and mood disorders.

INTEGRATIVE APPROACH

The field of cognitive neuroscience and computational psychiatry is at a pivotal point, striving to create unified methodologies, theories, and models that translate into practical applications. Traditional research often isolates specific disorders, examining them within narrow biological or behavioral scopes. However, an integrated perspective is crucial for a nuanced understanding of the interplay between brain, mind, and behavior, and for advancing mental health care.

In response to this need, my work adopts a multidisciplinary approach. I blend insights from computational psychiatry, mathematical psychology, neuroscience, and behavioral economics. This synthesis allows me to explore the cognitive, motivational, and physiological underpinnings of individual thought processes, perceptions, and behaviors. My goal is to develop a comprehensive and integrative framework that enhances our understanding of essential mental processes and the intricate connections between the brain and behavior. This framework is designed to unravel the complexities of what we categorize as mental health conditions, offering a more profound and holistic perspective.

SHORT PROFILE

  • Researcher in computational psychiatry and model-based neuroscience

  • Bridging clinical neuroscience, mathematical psychology, and behavioral economics

  • Skilled in integrative testing across cognitive and social-cognitive domains

  • Proficient in combining EEG and eye-tracking with advanced modeling techniques and experiments

  • Versatile in analyzing experimental data across clinical and non-clinical settings and across species

  • Deep expertise in statistics (Bayesian & Frequentist), machine learning, and modeling across analytical levels

  • Entrepreneurially inclined with a decade of industry experience in finance and consulting

  • Self-driven first-generation academic and college student

My unique combination of expertise in computational modeling, neuroscience, psychology, and game-theory economics, supplemented by clinical experience and industry-honed leadership and project management skills, positions me distinctively for spearheading innovative research in Cognitive Neuroscience and Computational Psychiatry. Throughout my graduate studies, I have effectively self-funded my research through multiple fellowships. My work has primarily focused on bridging gaps in neurocognitive testing for ADHD, where I have developed and piloted mechanistic tasks integrating physiological measures such as eye-tracking and EEG. This endeavor also involved the creation of custom hardware and software solutions. My research endeavors are evidenced by a robust publication record, underscoring my dedication to ADHD research alongside my postdoctoral responsibilities.

​In my postdoctoral role, I have applied my computational modeling expertise to multiple Conte Center grants focused on neurocognitive testing for depression, bipolar disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Additionally, my work with intracranial recordings in Parkinson’s disease patients has significantly deepened my understanding of the basal ganglia's role in cognitive control. Overall, I have gained experience in various computational modeling approaches across multiple cognitive domains and from clinical and non-clinical datasets and across species.

As dedicated first-generation academic, I focus on theory-driven and model-based research with foundational and applied components. I am aspiring to a professorship where I can lead cross-disciplinary research teams. My program will bridge various academic fields and foster partnerships across different departments and institutions. It will also extend to collaborations with industry and societal stakeholders to translate research into practical solutions.

Out of clutter, find simplicity.

From discord, find harmony.

In the middle of difficulty

lies opportunity.

- Albert Einstein

MY SCIENTIFIC MINDSET

Interdisciplinary cooperation:  I am a strong advocate of collaborations and interdisciplinary openness and tolerance. I appreciate the diversity each team member brings.  I am eager to overcome barriers that sometimes arise because different research disciplines use different jargon and methods of data collection and analysis.

Problem orientation:  My mission and subsequent research questions are my motivating factors. I rely extensively on the literature and on collaborations to answer my research questions, and I build my methodological expertise around them. My pursuit of further knowledge and education has placed me in collaboration with many different scientists.  For instance, I have worked with biostatistician Dr. Helena C. Kraemer, to combine computational model parameters with her moderator analysis strategy, which was specifically developed to determine which treatment will be optimally suited for which group of patients. I have also worked with Dr. Roger Ratcliff, an expert in diffusion decision modeling, to assess the effects of aging on cognitive flexibility, and how to improve neurocognitive testing for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD).  I also conducted research and gained knowledge in experimental and behavioral economics at the University of Zurich with Dr. Roberto Weber and Dr. Ernst Fehr.  

NEWS

January 2023

Grateful for the support by the prestigious postdoctoral fellowship from the Swiss National Science Foundation - finally we can start some translational and transdiagnostic research!

December 2022

I am thrilled to announce that I have been awarded the prestigious T32 Fellowship for Computational Psychiatry. What an honor - I am very grateful!

January 2021

Check out my radio interview with WOSU radio station on how computational psychiatry can help to understand attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) - thank you for this great opportunity

December 2020

Press release of my latest publication in Psychological Bulletin (how can we improve neurocognitive testing using computational models?): Link

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