Research Topic

Empathy in a Broader Context: Development, Mechanisms, Remediation

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About this Research Topic

Empathy as the ability to share another person’s feelings has become an increasingly popular subject of studies in the field of social neuroscience and psychiatry. As a “glue” in the social world, empathy allows us to interact effectively, e.g. understand the intentions of others, predict their behavior, ...

Empathy as the ability to share another person’s feelings has become an increasingly popular subject of studies in the field of social neuroscience and psychiatry. As a “glue” in the social world, empathy allows us to interact effectively, e.g. understand the intentions of others, predict their behavior, draws us to help others and even stops us from hurting others.
Investigators have emphasized that empathy is a necessary component of emotional health. The dysfunction of empathy has been underlying some neuropsychiatric disorders e.g. autism and some personality disorders.
Knowledge of neurobiological underpinnings of empathy has been expanding in the recent years. Neuroimaging studies have revealed mechanisms of mirroring others’ emotions, shared representations and the role of emotion regulation in empathic processes. In our project we would like to highlight broader aspects of empathy that encompass individual development, phenomenology and pathology of empathy. We will endeavor to trace links between (abnormal) development of empathy and the risks for neuropsychiatric disorders. This Research Topic will also promote a remediation approach that includes practicing and educating empathy.
We welcome all of the article types accepted by the journal.
Potential themes within this topic will include:
• Phenomenology, dimensions of empathy, gender effect
• Developmental trajectory of empathy
• Neurobiology/ mechanisms
• Empathy dysfunction in neuropsychiatric disorders
• Burnout in care professionals
• Remediation


Keywords: Empathy, brain mechanisms, empathy dysfunction, practicing empathy, life stages


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