The Kavli Institute for Brain Science (KIBS) at Columbia University was established in 2004 with a $7.5 million gift from the Kavli Foundation. Eric Kandel was the inaugural Kavli Professor of Brain Science and served as the first Director, along with Co-Director Rafael Yuste. In 2021, Daphna Shohamy and Larry Abbot became Co-Directors; Daphna Shohamy was also named the new Kavli Professor of Brain Science.
The culmination of 20th-century scientific research was bringing together chemistry and biology in the discovery of DNA and mapping the genome. The next frontier is bringing together psychology and biology to map the mind. The Kavli Institute for Brain Science intends to be an important outpost on this new frontier.
Eric Kandel, Sagol Professor of Brain Science, Founding Director
KIBS focuses on the development of novel experimental and computational strategies for analyzing how signaling in neural circuits controls cognitive function and behavior. With 37 members from a wide range of disciplines, KIBS approaches brain science from a number of angles: theoretical and computational, cognitive and psychological, cellular and systemic; while incorporating advances in nanotechnology and bench-to-bedside translational medicine. Its research unites the core sciences of chemistry, biology, and physics with disciplines ranging from philosophy and psychology, to engineering, to business, law, and economics.
One of the Institute’s goals is to build bridges within the Columbia Neuroscience community and with other Kavli Foundation-funded neuroscience institutes. KIBS, therefore, is philosophically and geographically positioned to both leverage and influence diverse efforts to understand how the mind works.