I am head of the Psychopathology of the Social Brain Research Group at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Department of Social Neuroscience, in Leipzig, Germany.

This website provides information on me and my research interests. Please feel free to contact me if you have questions about my work.

Most of my research evolves around the central topic of emotion – how we experience them, how they influence our perceptions, interpretations and decisions regarding the world around us, how, in turn, we manage to regulate our emotions and how we share and understand the emotions of others. To study these questions I use behavioral, peripheral and neurophysiological measures and neuroimaging techniques.

As a psychotherapist, I am also interested in alterations of emotional processing in mental disorders. The clinical studies clearly showed the need for thorough exploration of the potential for plasticity of these mechanisms and I am currently involved in a large longitudinal intervention study that differentiates the effects of more affective as well as more cognitive training modules.

In the future I want to continue exploring the nature of emotions and further strengthen my current focus on the role of emotions in social contexts, the related alterations in psychopathology and plasticity of the processes through training. In the long run, I would like to use the gained knowledge to improve our understanding of the etiology of mental disorders and their optimal treatment.