Anjan Chatterjee (neuroscientist)

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Anjan Chatterjee
image shows Anjan Chatterjee at the shore. He took this picture of himself
Anjan Chatterjee
Born October 22, 1958
Bhopal, India
Residence Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Nationality American
Citizenship USA
Alma mater Haverford College, The University of Pennsylvania
Known for Cognitive neuroscience, Cognitive Neurology, Empirical aesthetics, Neuroethics
Awards The Norman Geschwind Prize in Behavioral Neurology (2002)[1]
Scientific career
Fields Cognitive neuroscience, Cognitive Neurology, Empirical aesthetics, Neuroethics
Institutions The University of Pennsylvania

Anjan Chatterjee (born 1958) is a professor of Neurology in the School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. He is a member of the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience. His research focuses on spatial cognition and its relationship to language. He also conducts neuroaesthetics research and writes about the ethical use of neuroscience findings in society.

He is President[2] of the International Association of Empirical Aesthetics and the Chair[3] of the Society for Behavioral and Cognitive Neurology.


Chatterjee obtained his BA in philosophy from Haverford College in 1980[4] and his MD from the University of Pennsylvania in 1985.[5] After his internship at the Medical College of Pennsylvania, he trained in Neurology at The University of Chicago. He then completed two research fellowships, one at Case Western Reserve University with Peter Whitehouse and a second at The University of Florida with Kenneth Heilman. He was a member of the neurology faculty at The University of Alabama at Birmingham before returning to the University of Pennsylvania. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology and a founding board member[6] of the International Neuroethics Society. He is also a board member for Haverford College,[7] The Associated Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired,[8] and Universal Promise (a non-profit educational organization). Editorial Activities: He is on the editorial boards of: The Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, Cognitive and Behavioral Neurology, Behavioural Neurology, European Neurology, Neuropsychology, Empirical Studies of the Arts, and American Journal of Bioethics: Neuroscience.

Research interests[edit]

Spatial cognition, event representation and language[edit]

Chatterjee combines functional neuroimaging and studies with patients with neurological disease to probe cognitive systems. He has investigated the neural representations of actions,[9] spatial,[10] and causal relations.[11] He is also interested in the relationship of perception and conception and language.[12] Based on his research, he has been skeptical of strong views of embodied cognition.[13]


Chatterjee has examined the paradoxical facilitation of artistic production. Some individual’s art changes and even improves after brain damage and tries to understand what such phenomena tell us about the nature of artistic practices.[14] More generally, he has been instrumental in articulating the promise and limitations of neuroaesthetics.[15]


In 2004, Chatterjee coined the term “cosmetic neurology” to describe how advances in clinical neurosciences might be used to enhance the abilities of healthy people and the ethical issues that follow from this practice.[16] He has argued that some form of enhancement is here to stay and that we should be mindful of the shape that these practices take.[17] He has also written about the problems that arise when commercial and health care interests collide.[18]

Selected publications[edit]

  • A. Chatterjee & M. J. Farah (eds.). (2013). Neuroethics in Practice. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.


  1. ^ "Past Award Winners". American Academy of Neurology. Archived from the original on 13 February 2013. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  2. ^ "IAEA President (elected in August 2012--website to be up-dated)". IAEA. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  3. ^ "Leadership". SBCN. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  4. ^ "Haverford College Board of Managers". Haverford College. Archived from the original on 11 November 2012. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  5. ^ "(faculty homepage)". University of Pennsylvania. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  6. ^ "History". International Neuroethics Society. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  7. ^ "Haverford College Board of Managers". Haverford College. Archived from the original on 11 November 2012. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  8. ^ "People on the Move". Philadelphia Business Journal. Retrieved 20 November 2012. 
  9. ^ Kable, JW; Chatterjee, A (September 2006). "Specificity of action representations in the lateral occipitotemporal cortex.". Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. 18 (9): 1498–1517. PMID 16989551. doi:10.1162/jocn.2006.18.9.1498. 
  10. ^ Amorapanth, P; Kranjec, A; Bromberger, B; Lehet, M; Widick, P; Woods, AJ; Kimberg, DY; Chatterjee, A (March 2012). "Language, perception, and the schematic representation of spatial relations.". Brain and Language. 120 (3): 226–236. PMC 3299879Freely accessible. PMID 22070948. doi:10.1016/j.bandl.2011.09.007. 
  11. ^ Straube, B.; Chatterjee, A. (1 January 2010). "Space and time in perceptual causality". Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. 4 (28): 28. PMC 2868299Freely accessible. PMID 20463866. doi:10.3389/fnhum.2010.00028. 
  12. ^ Chatterjee, A (August 2008). "The neural organization of spatial thought and language.". Seminars in speech and language. 29 (3): 226–238. PMID 18720319. doi:10.1055/s-0028-1082886. 
  13. ^ Chatterjee, Anjan (1 January 2010). "Disembodying cognition". Language and Cognition. 2 (1): 79–116. PMC 2927131Freely accessible. PMID 20802833. doi:10.1515/LANGCOG.2010.004. 
  14. ^ Chatterjee, A (2006). "The neuropsychology of visual art: conferring capacity". International review of neurobiology. International Review of Neurobiology. 74: 39–49. ISBN 9780123668752. PMID 16730504. doi:10.1016/S0074-7742(06)74003-X. 
  15. ^ Chatterjee, A (January 2011). "Neuroaesthetics: a coming of age story.". Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. 23 (1): 53–62. PMID 20175677. doi:10.1162/jocn.2010.21457. 
  16. ^ Chatterjee, A. (27 September 2004). "Cosmetic neurology: The controversy over enhancing movement, mentation, and mood". Neurology. 63 (6): 968–974. PMID 15452285. doi:10.1212/01.WNL.0000138438.88589.7C. 
  17. ^ Chatterjee, A (Spring 2007). "Cosmetic neurology and cosmetic surgery: parallels, predictions, and challenges.". Cambridge quarterly of healthcare ethics : CQ : the international journal of healthcare ethics committees. 16 (2): 129–137. PMID 17539465. 
  18. ^ Chancellor, Bree; Chatterjee, Anjan (1 October 2011). "Brain Branding: When Neuroscience and Commerce Collide". AJOB Neuroscience. 2 (4): 18–27. doi:10.1080/21507740.2011.611123. 

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