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Neuroeconomics is a branch of economics which studies the neural mechanisms of decision-making and their economic significance combining tools from neuroscience, psychology and experimental economics.

Neuroeconomics has been described as:

  • "an emerging transdisciplinary field that uses neuroscientific measurement techniques to identify the neural substrates associated with economic decisions” (Zak, 2004, p. 1737)
  • “Economics, psychology and neuroscience are converging today in to a single unified discipline with the ultimate aim of providing a single, general theory of human behavior. (…) The goal of this discipline is thus to understand the processes that connect sensation and action by revealing the neurobiological mechanisms by which decisions are made". (Glimcher & Rustichini, 2004, p. 447)
  • “the program for understanding the neural basis of the behavioral response to scarcity” (Ross, 2005, p. 330)

The word "neuroeconomics" was among the candidate for the Webster’s Dictionary Word of the Year for 2006 (but was beaten by "CrackBerry")

First conferences

  • Neurobehavioral economics (Carnegie-Mellon University, 1997)
  • Neural economics (Princeton University, 2000)
  • Neuroeconomics (University of Minnesota, 2002)
  • NeuroPsychoEconomics Conference (Muenster, Germany, 2005)


  • The Society For Neuroeconomics (incorporated in 2005)
  • Association for NeuroPsychoEconomics (2004)


  • NeuroPsychoEconomics, ISSN 1861-4523 (2006)
  • Games and Economic Behavior, Volume 52, Issue 2, (2005) Special Issue on Neuroeconomics Edited by A. Rustichini
  • Brain Research Bulletin, Volume 67, Issue 5, November 2005
  • Neuron, Special Review Issue on Reward and Decision, October 2002

Research Labs

  • Center for the Study of Neuroeconomics, George Mason University (2004)
  • Stanford Necon Lab (2004)
  • Camerer Lab, Caltech
  • Center for the Study of Neuroeconomics (P.J. Zak)
  • Duke Center for Neuroeconomic Studies
  • Glimcher Lab (1994)

Encyclopedia entries

• McCabe, Kevin, 2003, "Neuroeconomics," Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science.


  • Glimcher, P. W. (2003). Decisions, uncertainty, and the brain : The science of neuroeconomics. Cambridge, Mass. ; London: MIT Press.