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Photo of Dr Darren Schreiber

Dr Darren Schreiber

Senior Lecturer

Amory B216

Research interests

My mission as a researcher is to develop, test, publish my best ideas about complexity and emergence in political systems.  My central focus recently has been in developing the new field of neuropolitics, using tools of neuroscience to investigate core questions about our nature as a political animal.  While the neuropolitics work has emphasized the microscale of politics, investigating the role of biological processes involved in political behavior, I have also been pursuing research using computational models to study the formation of political parties and the emergence of ideology.

Modules taught


Darren Schreiber’s research centers on emergence and complexity in political systems. He studied Politics, Philosophy, and Economics as an undergraduate at Claremont McKenna College.  After college he attended UC Davis School of Law, where he focused on civil rights litigation and had his first federal jury trial at age 23.  He then specialized in federal litigation at the 100 year-old law firm of Neumiller and Beardslee.  Unsatisfied with the intellectual life of a lawyer, Darren moved to academia.  While earning his Ph.D. in Political Science at UCLA, Darren developed an agent-based computer simulation of the formation and dynamics of political parties.  He has pioneered the subfield of neuropolitics with the first use of functional brain imaging (fMRI) to study the neural foundations of politics.  His first book, Your Brain is Built for Politics, synthesizes a decade of research and develops novel insights into political sophistication, partisanship, racism, and voting behavior using neuroscience tools such as functional imaging and neural network models.  His long-term objective is to integrate his agent-based models of macro political dynamics with his computational model of political cognition in individuals in order to illuminate the emergence of political ideology in mass publics.  Darren's previous appointments were at Central European University in Budapest, Hungary; University of California, San Diego;  the Center of Excellence in Cancer Communication Research at Annenberg School, University of Pennsylvania; and the Solomon Asche Center for Ethnopolitical Conflict at the University of Pennsylvania.

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