Alireza Soltani, Ph.D.

About me

Currently, I am an Associate Professor (with tenure) of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Dartmouth College. I am a neuroscientist with training in computational and cognitive neuroscience and theoretical physics. I hold a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Physics from Sharif University of Technology. I obtained my Ph.D. in Physics with a focus in Computational Neuroscience from Brandeis University working with Xiao-Jing Wang. Following my Ph.D., I have done postdoctoral research with Christof Koch at Caltech, Read Montague at Baylor College of Medicine, and Tirin Moore at Stanford University.

About my research

My research mainly focuses on understanding adaptive decision making and learning. Specifically, I am interested in understanding neural mechanisms underlying these processes and exploring how computations required for these processes are performed by neuronal elements in the brain.

To achieve this goal, I use detailed computational modeling at different levels (synaptic, cellular, and network), as well as psychophysics and behavioral studies in humans, to look for feasible mechanisms that account for both behavioral and neural data. The ultimate goal is to bridge the gap between cognitive and neuronal processes, and further explain behavioral laws in terms of biophysical parameters and constraints.

A central part of my research involves collaboration with experimentalists who study relevant questions in different species (rats, monkeys, and humans), and use a wide range of methods such as electrophysiology, MEG, fMRI, psychophysics, and behavioral economics.