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Symposium Social Interaction

Social Interaction: Neurobiological Reward Systems and their Role in Mental Health

The Hengstberger-Symposium on "Social Interaction: Neurobiological Reward Systems and their Role in Mental Health" funded by the Klaus-Georg and Sigrid Hengstberger Foundation will take place at the Internationales Wissenschaftsforum Heidelberg (IWH) from Monday, May 06th to Wednesday, May 08th, 2019.


30 renowned experts and highly motivated junior scientists with diverse backgrounds in psychiatry, psychology, biology, and neuroscience will bring together their views on the investigation of social interactions and discuss interdisciplinary approaches for the promotion of healthy behavior and resilience against (mental) disorders.


The aim of the workshop is to promote scientific exchange as well as the development of a network between international renowned experts and junior scientists. We hope to generate innovative and interdisciplinary questions, to explore the impact of social interaction on mental health, and to stimulate new therapeutic approaches for mental disorders.

Martin Fungisai Gerchen, PhD, Monika Eckstein, PhD, und Dr. Anna-Lena Zietlow, PhD

The inspiration for this symposium arose from the collaboration of the Institute for Medical Psychology, at the Center for Psychosocial Medicine of the University Hospital Heidelberg and the Department of Clinical Psychology at the Central Institute of Mental Health Mannheim. This partnership centred on the study of the neurobiological underpinnings of couple interaction (the Hypercouple Study) and research on neurofeedback interventions targeting the dopaminergic reward system in mothers with bonding difficulties (the NeMo-Study).


We are delighted that the generosity of the Hengstberger Award enables us to organize an international symposium on these fascinating and highly relevant aspects of social interaction research.


We look forward to seeing you all in Heidelberg!

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