Neuroeconomics, Decision neuroscience, Social neuroscience, Brain connectivity, Neuroimaging, fMRI


I’m an Associate Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Temple University, where I direct the Neuroeconomics Laboratory. Our research focuses on the neural mechanisms that contribute to social and economic decision making. For example, how do we process and compare different types of rewards and experiences? How do we trust other people and cooperate in group settings? Why do these decisions go awry in some people but not others? To investigate the links between incentives and our behavior, we utilize an interdisciplinary approach, incorporating perspectives from neuroscience, psychology, and economics. The major goals of our research are to understand mechanistic links between incentives and behavior and to translate that knowledge into clinical interventions and improved public policies.

I received my PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience from Duke University in 2012. To support my work, I have received grants from the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute on Drug Abuse, and the National Institute on Aging. In addition to research, I also teach classes on sensation and perception, decision neuroscience and behavioral economics, functional magnetic resonance imaging, and statistics. Finally, I am an active reviewer for approximately 60 academic journals, and I currently serve as an Associate Editor at Collabra: Psychology.

Curriculum Vitae Website

Selected Publications

  • Dennison JB, Tepfer LJ, Smith DV (2023). Tensorial Independent Component Analyses Reveals Social and Reward Networks Associated with Major Depressive Disorder. Human Brain Mapping, 44(7), 2905-20. [doi] 
  • Dobryakova E & Smith DV (2022). Reward Enhances Connectivity between the Ventral Striatum and the Default Mode Network. NeuroImage, 285:119398. [doi]
  • Fareri DS, Hackett K, Tepfer LJ, Kelly V, Henninger N, Reeck C, Giovannetti T, Smith DV (2022). Age-Related Differences in Ventral Striatal and Default Mode Network Function During Reciprocated Trust. NeuroImage, 256:119267. [doi]
  • Dennison JB, Sazhin D, Smith DV (2022). Decision Neuroscience and Neuroeconomics: Recent Progress and Ongoing Challenges. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science, 13(3):e1589. [doi] 
  • Tepfer LJ, Alloy LB, Smith DV (2021). Family History of Depression is Associated with Alterations in Task-Dependent Connectivity between the Cerebellum and Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex. Depression and Anxiety, 38(5), 508-520. [doi]
  • Ng TH, Alloy LB, Smith DV (2019). Meta-analysis of Reward Processing in Major Depressive Disorder Reveals Distinct Abnormalities within the Reward Circuit. Translational Psychiatry, 9(293). [doi] 
  • Smith DV, Gseir M, Speer ME, Delgado MR (2016). Toward a Cumulative Science of Functional Integration: a Meta-Analysis of Psychophysiological Interactions. Human Brain Mapping, 37(8), 2904-17. [doi]
  • Smith DV, Rigney AE, Delgado MR (2016). Distinct Reward Properties are Encoded via Corticostriatal Interactions. Scientific Reports, 6, 20093. [doi]

  • Smith DV, Hayden BY, Truong T-K, Song AW, Platt ML, Huettel SA (2010). Distinct Value Signals in Anterior and Posterior Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex. Journal of Neuroscience, 30(7), 2490-2495. [doi] 

Courses Taught

  • PSYC 2104: Foundations of Sensation & Perception
  • PSYC/NSCI 3008: Decision Neuroscience
  • PSYC 5003: Advanced Statistics