Jean Decety

  • Irving B. Harris Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology and Psychiatry


Jean Decety is a leading scholar on the social and developmental neuroscience of empathy, moral judgment, sensitivity to justice and prosocial behavior, as well as other topics related to how we feel, think and behave in social situations.

His work has led to new understandings of the socioemotional and cognitive processes involved in social cognition in typically developing children and adults, as well as criminal psychopaths. His research uses a multi-level approach (from genes to behavior), including neuroimaging (functional MRI, high-density EEG/ERPs) and eye-tracking techniques.

Decety is a member of the Committee on Neurobiology. He is the founding editor of the journal Social Neuroscience and serves on the editorial boards of Development and Psychopathology, Neuropsychologia and Frontiers in Emotion. He is the co-founder of the Society for Social Neuroscience.

Decety is co-director of the Brain Research Imaging Center at UChicago Medicine, head of the Social Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory and director of the Child NeuroSuite at UChicago.