Pharmacology of Economic and Social Decision Making

Molly J. Crockett, Ernst Fehr

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

18 Scopus citations


In this chapter we present a survey of studies employing pharmacological manipulations in humans to elucidate the psychological and neural mechanisms underlying the neuromodulation of economic and social preferences. We will review research examining the effects of changes in neurotransmitters (including serotonin, dopamine, and noradrenaline) and hormones (such as oxytocin and testosterone) on human decision making. Recent studies have shown these neuromodulatory systems to play a key role in shaping time, risk, and social preferences. We will consider how the involvement of these evolutionarily ancient chemical systems in basic learning and affective processes scales up to impact complex decision making in economic and social settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationNeuroeconomics
Subtitle of host publicationDecision Making and the Brain: Second Edition
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages21
ISBN (Print)9780124160088
StatePublished - Sep 2013
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Neuroscience


  • Decision making
  • Dopamine
  • Impatience
  • Intertemporal choice
  • Norepinephrine
  • Oxytocin
  • Risk
  • Serotonin
  • Social preferences
  • Testosterone


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