Columbia University in the City of New York

Our Vision

Zuckerman Institute Principal Investigator Randy Bruno (right) and student (Credit: John Abbott).

We have a mind to discover.

At Columbia University’s Zuckerman Institute, our mission is to decipher the brain. We believe that understanding how the brain works — and gives rise to mind and behavior — is the most urgent and exciting challenge of our time.

Our passionate group of researchers is exploring how the brain develops, performs, endures, and recovers to gain critical insights into human health and behavior for the benefit of people and societies everywhere.

Because the brain and mind are central to the human experience — shaping not only our thoughts and feelings, but also our motivations and actions — the potential for discovery is staggering.

A deeper, more intricate knowledge of the brain will accelerate efforts to design effective treatments for brain-related disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, as well as depression and autism. Early-stage research is the foundation of this knowledge — and a critical first step on the path to cures.

As one example, recent insights into the role of proteins in specific parts of the brain implicated in memory have revealed that age-related memory loss is an entirely separate syndrome from Alzheimer’s disease, with distinct causes that may eventually be treatable.

Beyond advancements in medicine, greater insight into creativity, decision-making, perception, and language will enrich and ultimately transform a wide range of endeavors — from computer science and the arts, to economics, law and social policy.

To meet this pivotal challenge, we have assembled an extraordinary team of world-class neuroscientists, engineers, statisticians, psychologists and other scholars from across Columbia University. Our shared culture of creativity, which extends to our commitment to educate and inspire future generations of scientists and innovators, will be brought to life in the new Jerome L. Greene Science Center — a state-of-the-art facility, purpose-built to spark interaction and the collision of minds.

We are driven to make new discoveries, to pioneer new techniques, and to develop new ideas that move science and humanity forward.

We have a mind to discover. Join Us.