Antonio Rangel, NOMIS Distinguished Scientist Awardee 2019

Antonio Rangel is the Bing Professor of Neuroscience, Behavioral Biology, and Economics, and head faculty in residence at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena, CA, United States. One of the world’s leading neuroeconomists, Rangel is studying the computational and neurobiological basis of human decision making, employing a variety of tools from neuroscience, economics, psychology and computer science, including functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), electroencephalography (EEG) and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), among others.

Rangel and his team are trying to understand how the brain assigns value to various options when faced with a choice, identifying the regions of the brain that encode those decisions. They are also investigating how the workings of the decision-making system change in more complex forms of choice, such as decisions involving self-control or altruism.

Antonio Rangel (Photo: Bill Youngblood)

The NOMIS Distinguished Scientist Award is supporting Rangel as he further investigates decision making. His project, Using Triangulation to Characterize the Neurocomputational Basis of Simple Choice, aims to advance our understanding of the neurocomputational basis of simple decisions, such as choosing between an apple and an orange, by investigating these types of choices in rodents, monkeys and humans.

Rangel has been president of the Society for Neuroeconomics, a fellow of the Association for Psychological Science and a national fellow at the Hoover Institution. He is the recipient of the Mentor Recognition Award from the University of California, San Diego, the Harvard University Certificate of Distinction in Teaching, the Allyn Young Prize for Excellence in Teaching from Harvard, and the CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation, among others.

Antonio Rangel received a PhD in economics from Harvard University in 1998. He was a faculty member at Stanford University from 1998 to 2006, as well as a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research from 1999 to 2007. He has been at Caltech since 2006, when he began focusing his research on decision neuroscience. Rangel has served as the director of Caltech’s NSF-IGERT PhD Program in Behavioral and Social Neuroscience, and as co-director of the Caltech Brain Imaging Center. He was appointed Bing Professor of Neuroscience, Behavioral Biology, and Economics in 2013 and has been head faculty in residence since 2018.

For more information about Antonio Rangel and his work, please see his faculty profile.