Minerva Foundation

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Minerva Foundation
Founded 1983
Founder Helen and Elwin Marg
Type Corporation
Focus Neuroscience
Area served
Method Research
$ 4,706,426 (2011)
Website http://www.minervaberkeley.org

The Minerva Foundation is a US-based non-profit, scientific and charitable foundation. It is headquartered in Berkeley, California. It works to promote research in neuroscience, specifically on original and challenging approaches to the study of the visual brain. It was established in 1983 by Helen and Elwin Marg.[1] Other than the founders, directors include Richard M. Buxbaum, Lawrence W. Stark, Semir Zeki, Tamia Marg Anderson and Lila S. Crutchfield.

The foundation was named after Minerva, the Roman goddess of, among other things, wisdom and medicine.[2]


Minerva Foundation is exclusively for fostering research in neuroscience, and has three major activities,[2] namely

  1. The Golden Brain Award which is awarded every year since 1985 to a neuroscientist for original discovery of significant findings of vision and the brain. Scientists are nominated by past laureates. Award distributions are held at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience.
  2. The International Conference on Neuroesthetics is a gathering of cross-disciplinary scholars to speak to a particular theme related to neuroesthetics.
  3. The Minerva House Visiting Scholar Residency Program provides an opportunity for retreat as well as exchange in a gracious house in north Berkeley close to the University.

Minerva House[edit]

Minerva Foundation has a Minerva House, constructed in 1889. It is a large Victorian building originally built for Charles C. Boudrow (c. 1830–1918), a Massachusetts-born master mariner, in downtown Berkeley near the University of California at Berkeley campus. The house was designated a City of Berkeley Landmark on 21 June 1976. It was bought by Frank Leba and Kelly Brown in 1994, who restored and renovated the entire building. They even received a BAHA Preservation Award in 2006.[3][4] The Minerva foundation finally acquired it in 2008. It has private living quarters (mostly studio apartments) for individual guests and a shared floor with a kitchen, library, computer facilities, media equipment, and study and conference rooms. Several apartments are reserved for visiting scholars. It is also reserved for Golden Brains during their stay.[5]


  1. ^ Gerald Westheimer (2010). "IN MEMORIAM: Elwin Marg". senate.universityofcalifornia.edu. University of California. Retrieved 4 September 2013. 
  2. ^ a b Minerva. "About Minerva Foundation". www.minervaberkeley.org. Minerva Foundation. Retrieved 4 September 2013. 
  3. ^ Daniella Thompson (8 September 2006). "East Bay Then and Now: Shipping Magnate's Mansion Is Rare Survivor on Oxford Street". The Berkeley Daily Planet. Retrieved 4 September 2013. 
  4. ^ Daniella Thompson (2006). "Captain Charles C. Boudrow House". berkeleyheritage.com. Retrieved 4 September 2013. 
  5. ^ Daniella Thompson. "The History of Minerva House". www.minervaberkeley.org. Minerva Foundation. Retrieved 4 September 2013. 

External links[edit]