Monica M. Luciana, Ph.D.
University of Minnesota
Dr. Monica Luciana is Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychology at the University of Minnesota. She obtained her B.A. in Psychology at Boston College in 1985 and moved to Minnesota several years later to begin graduate school. She obtained her Ph.D. in 1994 from the University of Minnesota’s Clinical Psychology Program, where she specialized in studying the neurochemical bases of executive functions, such as working memory, planning, and inhibitory control in adults, as well as their development over time. Dr. Luciana’s work with pre-adolescent children led her to recognize that there was a gap in the understanding of executive function development between adolescence and young adulthood. Since 2003, she has been conducting longitudinal studies of brain and behavioral development in 9- to 25-year-olds using personality measures, cognitive tests, and brain imaging techniques. Recent studies emphasize interactions between executive functions and the brain's reward systems. Dr. Luciana is one of the founding members of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Neurobehavioral Development and co-editor of the award-winning Handbook of Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience. She has served as Chair of the University of Minnesota’s Department of Psychology since 2012. When she is not working, she enjoys reading mystery novels, beach vacations, spending time with her family, and attending her 11-year-old son’s sports events (he is an avid baseball and basketball player).