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Kia Nobre


Professor of Translational Cognitive Neuroscience

  • Head of Department, Experimental Psychology
  • Director of OHBA
  • Statutory Chair in Translational Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Professorial Fellow, St Catherine's College, Oxford
  • Head of Brain & Cognition Lab
Human Cognitive Neuroscience - Dynamic Regulation of Perception and Cognition by Memory and Attention

Anna Christina Nobre (known as Kia Nobre) is a cognitive neuroscientist interested in understanding the principles of the neural systems that support cognitive functions in the human brain. Her current research looks at how neural activity linked to perception and cognition is modulated according to memories, task goals and expectations. In addition to revealing the basic mechanisms of these large-scale dynamic regulatory mechanisms, she is interested in how these develop over the lifespan, and how they are disrupted in psychiatric and neurodegenerative disorders.

Her work integrates behavioural methods with a powerful combination of non-invasive techniques to image and stimulate the human brain, such as electro- and magneto-encephalography (EEG and MEG), structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Funding for her core research activities comes from the Wellcome Trust, the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR), Medical Research Council (MRC),  European Commission, and the James S. McDonnell Foundation Program (JSMF). Students and fellows in her laboratory also receive competitive scholarships and awards from the Wellcome Trust, Medical Research Council (MRC), the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR), Rhodes Scholarship, the EU Initial Training Network (EC), and St John's College Oxford.

Brief Biography

Kia grew up in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and then completed her university education in the United States. She obtained her PhD (1993) and carried out postdoctoral research at Yale University, supervised by Gregory McCarthy, and then became instructor at Harvard Medical School, working with Marsel Mesulam at the Behavioural Neurology Unit of Beth Israel Hospital. She moved to Oxford in 1994 to take up a McDonnell-Pew Lectureship in Cognitive Neuroscience and a Junior Research Fellowship at New College. Prior to her current position, Kia was a university lecturer (Reader 2002-2006, Professor 2006-2014) at the Department of Experimental Psychology at Oxford, and was Tutorial Fellow at New College, Oxford (1996-2014). 

Current Positions

Kia is the first to hold the chair in Translational Cognitive Neuroscience at Oxford, held jointly between the Departments of Psychiatry and of Experimental Psychology. She is a Professorial Fellow at St Catherine's College. She is also Adjunct Professor at Northwestern University in Chicago, USA, where she is a member of the Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer's Disease Centre (CNADC). Kia directs the Oxford Centre for Human Brain Activity (OHBA) and heads the Brain & Cognition Lab.

Kia is a fellow of the British Academy and a member of the Academia Europe. She is actively engaged in serving the academic and scientific communities. She is Advisor to the James S. McDonnell Foundation Program (JSMF) in Understanding Human Cognition; serves as Reviewing Editor for the Journal of Neuroscience and as Associate Editor for the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience; contributes to the Young Investigator and International Research Award Committees of the Society for Neuroscience; and supports the programme committees of the British Neuroscience Association, Cognitive Neuroscience Society, and International Conference on Cognitive Neuroscience.


In her role as statutory chair, Kia is passionate about enriching translational cognitive neuroscience with cutting-edge and rigorous fundamental cognitive neuroscience. Kia is committed to keeping curiosity and science alive. She is dedicated to education and mentoring at all levels. She is also active and interested in communicating and discussing scientific ideas with the public.

The Oxford Handbook of Attention

Kia is co-author of The Oxford Handbook of Attention, published by OUP. If your institution has access to Oxford Handbooks Online, you can view chapters here.

Relevant Web Sites

Google scholar profile

Brain & Cognition Lab

Oxford Centre for Human Brain Activity

St Catherine's profile


Oxford Cognitive Health in Ageing Programme

Oxford Dementia and Ageing Research

Freedom Lab videos

Oxford Sparks - featured scientists

Research Media profile


Cognitive Health in Ageing Study Video

Cambridge TV


Twitter: @KiaNobre

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Recent Publications

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