The Optimism Bias: A cognitive neuroscience perspective

Authors: Claude J. Bajada

Corresponding: Claude J. Bajada (

Keywords: Optimism bias, cognitive neuroscience, psychology, neural basis


Issue: Xjenza Online Vol. 2 Iss. 1 - March 2014

The optimism bias is a well-established psychological phenomenon. Its study has implications that are far reaching in elds as diverse as mental health and economic theory. With the emerging eld of cognitive neuroscience and the advent of advanced neu- roimaging techniques, it has been possible to investigate the neural basis of the optimism bias and to understand in which neurological conditions this natural bias fails. This review rst de nes the optimism bias, discusses its implications and reviews the literature that investigates its neural basis. Finally some potential pitfalls in experimental design are discussed.

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