The award, which is presented to an outstanding researcher in the field of Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience each year, honours Dr. Peter Huttenlocher’s distinguished and pioneering contributions to the field. Dr. Huttenlocher was a pediatric neurologist and neuroscientist who is considered one of the fathers of Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience.
Dr. Adele Diamond is the Canada Research Chair Tier 1 Professor of Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience at University of British Columbia. She helped found the field of developmental cognitive neuroscience.
With over 40 years of experience, her specialty is the rigorous study of executive functions (EFs) in children. EFs include focused attention, creative problem-solving, self-control, and working memory. Dr. Diamond studies how EFs are affected by biological factors (such as genes and neurochemistry) and by environmental ones (e.g., impaired by stress or improved by interventions).
Her work has consistently been marked by innovation and crossing disciplinary boundaries. Dr. Diamond’s discoveries have thrice changed international medical guidelines for the treatment of diseases and have had a significant impact on educational practice worldwide, improving millions of children’s lives. She has often broken new ground with her research, including demonstrating one of the first links between cognitive development and brain function, identifying the biological mechanism causing executive function deficits in children treated for PKU, and changing the way we think about stress.
A member of the Royal Society of Canada, Dr. Diamond was also named one of the “2000 Outstanding Women of the 20th Century,” and was listed as one of the 15 most influential neuroscientists alive today. Her other awards include an Award for Lifetime Contributions to Developmental Psychology in the Service of Science and Society plus two honorary degrees. She has given roughly 600 invited addresses in over 40 countries across 6 continents, including at the White House and to the Dalai Lama.
Dr. Diamond was educated at Swarthmore College (BA, Phi Beta Kappa, in Sociology-Anthropology and Psychology), Harvard University (PhD in Developmental Psychology), and Yale Medical School (Postdoctoral Fellow in Neuroscience).