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If you are interested in applying for an internship in the Social Brain Lab please follow the instructions on this page. This also applies to literature thesis projects.

Current STUDENTs

Aline Frick ( )

I am a bachelor psychology student at the University of Vienna. I am working under the supervision of Helena Hartman on her project which investigates the role of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in prosocial behaviour. Through the project I get the opportunity to pursue my interest in social neuroscience and the application of rTMS. I find the interplay of the motor cortex and possible clinical implications of this project very interesting and I am really looking forward to the time in the lab.


Chris Eva ( )

I am working under the supervision of Julian Packheiser and Frédéric Michon on their projects, which involves investigating emotional contagion and contextual based fear in rodent model, and implantation of neuropixels probes in rats for chronic neural recordings for whole brain functional imaging. Our rodent model work allows us to evaluate anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), which plays a vital role in modulation of empathy in humans and rodents. Personally, I find the projects to be really exciting and novel, and I hope to do a small part to contribute valuable knowledge to the field of social neuroscience.


Egle Maria Orlando (

I am passionate about ethnopsychology and social neuroscience. In particular, my main interest lies in the neural mechanisms underlying empathy and prosocial behaviour. I am currently working, under the supervision of Helena Hartmann, on the role played by the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in conflictual decision making and empathy. For this purpose we use the combination of behavioral paradigms and repetitive TMS. All this is extremely fascinating and we hope it will offer some new insights into empathy and prosocial decision making research!


Ivar Rambags (

I am working on my neurosciences master thesis under supervision of Helena Hartmann where we investigate the causal role of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in human social decision making within conflictual situations for oneself vs. others using repetitive TMS. Furthermore, we want to explore what inter-individual differences can explain these decisions in such moral dilemmas. I am very excited to get familiar with the social neurosciences while learning a new technique for me personally and hope we can contribute valuable knowledge to the field!


Imaainjaly Thanuvasthan ( )

I am a bachelor student from the University of Applied Sciences Utrecht and currently working on a project where we are deciphering the presynaptic connectivity of the ACC in emotional contagion, under the supervision of Dr. Rajeev Rajendran. Through this project I have the opportunity to explore the pathological side of neuroscience, which intrigues me the most. I am also very eager to learn more about the emotional contagion paradigm at this amazing lab and hope my contribution will be of value to the science field!


Judit Campdepadrós Barrios ( )

I am a second-year master’s student doing my internship under the supervision of Dr. Sebastian Speer. The project focuses on moral decision-making, specifically on learning the consequences of our actions when self-gain and other-pain are at stake. We use computational modeling to explain how the brain computes value, and our aim is to understand how cognitive empathy and emotional contagion influence learning and decision-making in a prosocial context. I am passionate about social neuroscience and my research interests focus on learning, emotion, motivation, and social decision-making.


Kelly Fredriksen ( )

I am a Psychology student and currently writing my bachelor thesis under supervision of Frédéric Michon. We are investigating the role of a tickling technique as an inducer of emotional contagion in rodents. For now, we are looking at the behavioral mechanisms underlying emotional contamination. I am furthermore interested in neurodegenerative disorders and the cognitive dysfunctioning of the brain and hope to explore more on this during my Master, which I will start upcoming academic year.


Polina Turishcheva ( )

I am doing my internship on ultrasound with Flora Nelissen in Social Brain Lab. My background is more computational, so I help with coding and learn a lot of wet lab skills. Interested in applying machine learning and topology for neural data. Before I used to work as a junior deep learning researcher in a bank. To know more or reach me please use or twitter (@pollytur1).



Sophie Lee ( )

I am a Master student at the UvA studying Cognitive Neuroscience. Together with my supervisor, Rajeev Rajendran, I am exploring the causal contributions of mirror neurons to emotional contagion. To do this we will employ a spatiotemporally specific cellular tagging techniques to silence precise neural populations we believe are key neural correlates to empathic behaviours. I am thrilled to work on such an exciting project and only hope to work in such a fun and influential environment in the future.


Venkata Neeha Joga ( )

I am a graduate with a Master’s in Molecular and Translational Neuroscience. I am working under the supervision of Frédéric Michon and Julian Packheiser on their project which investigates the relation between emotional contagion and consolation behavior in the anterior cingulate cortex of rodents using electrophysiological recordings. I am fascinated to learn about how neural networks are mapped during emotions like happiness, fear, pain, and empathy. I am very excited to learn and to be a part of the Social brain lab and look forward to my time here.



Former Students:

2021 Milda Jaseliunaite, Neslihan Sahin, Cas Teurlings, Claudia Albero Herreros, Lenca Cuturela, Ruben de Klerk

2020  Blom Kraakman, Mariana Edwards, Karen Syfaki, Anastasia Dima, Marla Dressel, Eline Ramaaker, Zayel Smit

2019  Augustine Attah, Laura Stolk, Ieva Gembutaite, Bodil Hoekzema, Steven Voges, Lara Lakhsassi, Laura Fornari, Bodil Hoekzema, Martina Pesce, Andrei Radu, Arianne Leijenaar, Laura Vercellin

2018  Alexandra Gabur, Chiara Hinna Danesi, Andrea Veggerby Lind, Susan van den Boogaard, Matteo Capone, Christiaan Becker, Lillian Emming

2017  Anna Henschel, Andrea Romaguera Álvarez, Elif Ezgi Aksulu, Ernesto Berenjeno, Maite van der Miesen, Maryam Yasamin Shirazi, Ming Liu, Nikki Brands, Sammy Heutz, Vaishnavi Balaji</


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