Brain Health Conference 2013

On April 12, 2013 the Stanford Center on Longevity and the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin convened a summit on brain health, focused on reviewing the current state of research behind software products and approaches that aim to defend against age-related cognitive decline. This meeting follows a similar meeting held five years ago which resulted in the 2008 Expert Consensus on Brain Health.

The previous 2008 meeting concluded that, although software-based cognitive training and brain games have been shown to improve users’ performance on trained tasks, there is minimal evidence that such gains translate into improved performance in the complex realm of everyday life. The expert consensus was that more research was needed before definitive statements could be made.

By way of follow-up, the recent meeting brought together twenty-four of the world-experts on learning, memory and cognitive function.  They spent the day grappling with the issue of brain health, cognitive function, and the utility of brain-training software.

The following article provides a general summary. Smarts or Shams?By Rita Beamish