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The rapid progress of neuroscience and the interdisciplinary collaboration between neuroscience and psychology have begun to provide valuable insights for understanding the dynamic and implicit nature of human motivation by identifying the in vivo neural mechanism of motivation. One of the fundamental questions in the field of the neuroscience of motivation is what neural mechanisms underlie the direction, intensity, and guidance of our motivation and subsequent actions. This prologue explains how neuroscience can contribute to the understanding of human motivation. To accomplish this purpose, we present what neuroscientific data look like, identify 13 key motivation-relevant brain structures, and introduce 3 key motivation-centric brain circuits – namely, the reward circuit, the value-based decision-making pathway, and the self-regulation/self-control network.


Institute for Positive Psychology and Education

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Book Chapter

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