In the last three decades, significant technological and conceptual developments have led complex systems neuroscience, already a multidisciplinary field in its interactions with mathematics, computer science, physics, and chemistry, to address topics traditionally belonging to disciplines firmly rooted in the human sciences. What may have initially seemed like a mere cultural trend has given rise to genuine research and educational domains. Examples of this important cultural development include the field of neuroaesthetics, which examines the brain processes involved in the production and appreciation of artistic and scientific experiences. From understanding the fundamental processes of plasticity and memory, we have arrived at neuroeducation, which focuses on the development of educational programs inspired by the brain processes that underlie learning behaviors. The study of individual and social decision-making within the context of morality has led to the development of fields such as neuroeconomics and neurolaw, inspiring innovative applications that have transformed the original disciplines (consider, for example, neuroleadership and neuropolitics, which investigate the neural processes that determine the characteristics of individuals in leadership positions within a company, political party, or religious group). The aspiration to investigate an even broader range of knowledge from a brain-centered perspective is inspiring fields such as neurophilosophy and neuroethics, as well as neuroliterature and neuropoetry. Despite the criticized oversimplification associated with the prefix “neuro” used to denote these domains, these areas of research promise to greatly enhance our understanding of human nature, not only in relation to individuals themselves but also regarding their inherently social characteristics.
THEORETICAL AND APPLIED NEUROSCIENCE