Scott Huettel

Scott Huettel

Professor in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience and Chair

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., Duke University 1999


Research in my laboratory investigates the brain mechanisms underlying economic and social decision making; collectively, this research falls into the field of “decision neuroscience” or "neuroeconomics". My laboratory uses fMRI to probe brain function, behavioral assays to characterize individual differences, and other physiological methods (e.g., eye tracking, pharmacological manipulation, genetics) to link brain and behavior. Concurrent with research on basic processes, my laboratory has also investigated the application of new analysis methods for fMRI data, including functional connectivity analyses, pattern classification analyses, and combinatoric multivariate approaches. We have also been applying computational methods to problems in behavioral economics and consumer decision making.  

I have also been very active in outreach, mentorship, and educational activities; as examples, I am lead author on the textbook Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (Sinauer Associates; 3rd edition in 2014), I teach courses on Decision Neuroscience and Neuroethics, and many of my postdoctoral and graduate trainees (12 as of 2015) lead research laboratories of their own.


Decision making, neuroeconomics, behavioral economics, social cognition, executive function, fMRI

Coutlee, CG, and Huettel, SA. "The functional neuroanatomy of decision making: prefrontal control of thought and action." Brain Research 1428 (January 2012): 3-12. (Review) Full Text

Clithero, JA, Reeck, C, Mckell Carter, R, Smith, DV, and Huettel, SA. "Nucleus accumbens mediates relative motivation for rewards in the absence of choice." Frontiers in Human Neuroscience AUGUST (August 2011). Full Text

Ballard, IC, Murty, VP, Carter, RM, MacInnes, JJ, Huettel, SA, and Adcock, RA. "Dorsolateral prefrontal cortex drives mesolimbic dopaminergic regions to initiate motivated behavior." The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 31.28 (July 2011): 10340-10346. Full Text

Clithero, JA, Smith, DV, Carter, RM, and Huettel, SA. "Within- and cross-participant classifiers reveal different neural coding of information." Neuroimage 56.2 (May 2011): 699-708. Full Text

Stanton, SJ, Mullette-Gillman, OA, McLaurin, RE, Kuhn, CM, LaBar, KS, Platt, ML, and Huettel, SA. "Low- and high-testosterone individuals exhibit decreased aversion to economic risk." Psychol Sci 22.4 (April 2011): 447-453. Full Text

Winecoff, A, Labar, KS, Madden, DJ, Cabeza, R, and Huettel, SA. "Cognitive and neural contributors to emotion regulation in aging." Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience 6.2 (April 2011): 165-176. Full Text

Venkatraman, V, Huettel, SA, Chuah, LYM, Payne, JW, and Chee, MWL. "Sleep deprivation biases the neural mechanisms underlying economic preferences." The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 31.10 (March 2011): 3712-3718. Full Text

Taren, AA, Venkatraman, V, and Huettel, SA. "A parallel functional topography between medial and lateral prefrontal cortex: evidence and implications for cognitive control." The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 31.13 (March 2011): 5026-5031. Full Text

Mullette-Gillman, OA, Detwiler, JM, Winecoff, A, Dobbins, I, and Huettel, SA. "Infrequent, task-irrelevant monetary gains and losses engage dorsolateral and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex." Brain Research 1395 (2011): 53-61. Full Text

Stanton, SJ, Mullette-Gillman, OA, and Huettel, SA. "Seasonal variation of salivary testosterone in men, normally cycling women, and women using hormonal contraceptives." Physiology and Behavior 104.5 (2011): 804-808. Full Text