Ruth Feldman, PhD is the Simms-Mann Professor of Developmental Social Neuroscience at the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzlia with joint appointment at Yale Child Study Center
With degrees in music composition (summa cum-laude), neuroscience (with honors), clinical psychology (with honors), and developmental psychology and psychopathology, her approach integrates perspectives from neuroscience, human development, philosophy, clinical practice, and the arts within an interpersonal frame and a behavior-based approach. Her conceptual model on biobehavioral synchrony systematically describes how a lived experience within close relationships builds brain, creates relationships, confers resilience, and promotes creativity. Her studies were the first to detail the role of oxytocin in the formation of human social bonds.
Her research is translational and informs the development of various interventions applied internationally. Her observational tools are used in 17 countries, translated to multiple languages, and utilized in research on all facets of human social relationships in health and psychopathology. She is a consultant on multiple international grants and a frequent keynote speaker in international conferences. Her studies often follow children from infancy to adulthood, address topics that are highly relevant to the general public, and receive substantial media attention.
Dr. Feldman is a fellow of the Association for Psychological Science and received multiple awards, including a young musician award, Rothschild award, NARSAD independent investigator award (twice), the Zeskind award for best paper in Biological Psychiatry, and the Graven’s Award for research on high-risk infants.
Principal Research Associate
Orna is a Biochemist, holding a PhD in chemistry from Ben-Gurion University in the field of Biophysics. She is an expert in measuring hormones, mainly Oxytocin, taken from boy fluids (blood, urine, salvia and more). Orna was a Post-doc at the Weizmann institute in neurobiology. During to her research activitiesshealso worked in clinical laboratories, in 2011 she received her “Senior Medical Laboratory Worker Recognition” in Endocrinology, and in 2014 received “Medical Laboratory Management Permit” from the Israeli Ministry of Health.
Principal Research Associate
Yoni is a cognitive-affective neuroscientist, working in two IDC Herzliya research groups. His main research focus is on the emerging neuroscience of intergroup conflicts and on social functions (e.g., empathy, attitudes) in the brain. Yoni received his neuroscience training in Israel (postdoc), the Netherlands (Ph.D.), Australia (M.Sc.) and France (B.Sc. and M.Sc.).
Eyal is a postdoc researcher. He received his BA degree in psychology and in the Multidisciplinary in the Arts Program from Tel-aviv university, a M.A in clinical child psychology program from Bar-ilan university, and a Phd in psychology from Bar-ilan university. His main research interest is the human parental brain and its associations with hormones, parental behavior, coparenting and long-term child’s development. In his clinical training he worked with infants and preschoolers at the Early Childhood Community Clinic. In 2018 Eyal received the Rothschild post-doctoral fellowship and the Fulbright post-doctoral fellowship.
Shani is a clinical psychologist and neuropsychologist, a postdoctoral researcher. She completed her BA in psychology at the Open University, an MA in clinical neuro-psychology at the University of Haifa, and a Ph.D at the University of Haifa. Her current research combines neuroimaging, behavioral and hormonal measures to explore the ‘self’ and self-development.
Amir is a student in the combined program towards Ph.D in experimental psychology at the Department of Psychology, Bar-Ilan University. He received his B.A. degree in Psychology and minor in Communication from the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya.
His study focuses on the relationship between autonomic measurements (e.g. heart rate, galvanic skin response), brain activity (using EEG), and hormones (mainly Oxytocin, Cortisol, Testosterone).
Moran studied BA and MA in children clinical psychology at Bar-Ilan University. Currently, she is a PhD candidate. Moran is a clinical psychologist. In her master, Moran has studied the social relationships in three-year old in relations to children relationship with their parents. Her current research is a Peace-Building Interventions for Israeli and Palestinian youth, combining biological and behavioral markers of empathy, tension, prejudice, and dialogue.
Shai received a BA in Behavioral Science from Tel-Aviv Jaffa Academic college, and an M.A in Child Clinical Psychology from Bar-Ilan University. During his M.A studies Shai was awarded the Hammer excellence scholarship by the Israel’s Council for Higher Education. He is currently completing his PhD, as well as doing his clinical internship at the Early Childhood Community Clinic. In his PhD work he studies physiological, hormonal, and cognitive factors related to the development of Posttraumatic stress disorder within children exposed to war related trauma.
Ortal is a clinical psychologist, and a Ph.D student in the Department of Psychology at Bar-Ilan University and the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya. She received my B.A. in psychology and biology, and my M.A in Clinical Psychology from Bar-Ilan University. Her current study aims to shed light on brain mechanisms underlying maternal responsiveness during the infant’s first year of life. In her clinical training she worked with infants and preschoolers children at the Early Childhood Community Clinic.
Adi is a neurobiologist, a Ph.D. student at the interdisciplinary center, Herzliya and the Gonda multidisciplinary brain research center at Bar-Ilan University.
Her academic background includes a biology B.Sc. and biomedical sciences M.Sc. from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and she also hold an IP Law M.A. degree from Haifa University. In her current Ph.D. studies, Adi analyzes hormonal, behavioral and neuroimaging data in order to assess the effect of kangaroo care on premature adolescents’ brain development.
Karen is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Psychology at Bar-Ilan University and the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya. She received her B.A. degree in Psychology and Literature from the Hebrew University, and her M.A. degree in Child Clinical Psychology from Bar-Ilan University. Her study focuses on identifying factors that determine risk and vulnerability to develop psychopathology among children exposed to chronic terror. Karen has been selected as a Ph.D fellow of the Azrieli foundation for 2017-2020.
Noa is a biotechnology student at Bar-Ilan University. She assists in the general operation of the hormonal lab, production of biological samples, running various analysis tests using advanced biological methods.
During her BA in psychology at Bar-Ilan University Ariela joined the lab as a behavioral micro-coder and mostly dealt with behavioral synchrony between parents and children and adult pairs, both romantic couples and strangers. She became lab administrator in 2017 and has recently started an MA in child and adolescent psychology at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya. Her research interests include child resilience factors to life stressors.
Shifra completed her BA in Psychology and Jewish History at Bar Ilan University and completed her MA in Clinical Child Psychology at the IDC Herzliya. She interests in and experience with research developed during her BA, where she studied Israeli and Palestinian interaction. Since, her research involvement has focused on childhood social development and the unique relationship between twins.
Roy is the center manager. He studied psychology at the Interdisciplinary Center, and he currentlystudies at the child and adolescent clinical psychology program at the IDC. Roy’s research interests are the intergenerational transmission of psychopathology, the connections between sexual orientation and the sense of entitlement and the biological components of anxiety.
Clinical Psychology Intern
Galit got her BA in Psychology and her MA in Child Clinical Psychology from Bar-Ilan University. She received her Phd in Psychology from Bar-Ilan University in 2018. Galit took part in a decade-long longitudinal research study which has examined risk and resilience factors of post-traumatic stress disorder in children exposed to war-related trauma. As a psychologist, she is taking part in an integrated internship program at the Early Childhood Community Clinic.
Clinical Psychology Intern
Natalie got her BA in psychology, sociology and anthropology from Ben-Gurion university, and her MA in child clinical psychology from Bar-Ilan university. As a psychologist, she takes part in the internship program at the Early Childhood Community Clinic. Natalie has a rich experience as a teacher and instructor, and she also works as a group trainer at Maytiv Center, in IDC school of psychology.
Clinical Psychology Intern
Shira received a BA in Behavioral Science from Ben-Gurion University and an M.A in Child Clinical and Developmental Psychology from Tel-Aviv Jaffa Academic college. In her thesis she studied about toddlers eating and feeding in institutions. She is currently doing her clinical internship at the Early Childhood Clinic.
Past PhD Students
mothering, emotion regulation, and information processing in premature infants
Emotion regulation in preschoolers
Maternal depression and infant physiological stress and emotion regulation across the first year
Contact effects on newborns’ physiological stress response and information processing
perschoolers’ mental representation of their mothers and fathers
Infants’ physiological, emotional, and behavioral regulation of increasing social stress
Oxyocin and the development of mothering from early pregnancy to the postpartum
Neonatal brainstem dysfunction and feeding disorders in premature infants
Oxytocin and the development of parenting
Genetic disorders in children (williams’ syndrome, VCF), social behavior, and social cognition
Neonatal brainstem dysfunction and physiological and emotional regulation in premature infants across the first months
The effects of kangaroo care intervention to premature neonates at ten years
Behavioral assessment for children with CP
Neonatal brainstem dysfunction and the development of attention and symbolic competencies in premature infants
Reciprocity with mother and father in early adolescence
Behavioral and mental consequence of exposure to war-related trauma in early childhood
Physiological and behavioral synchrony with mother and father at the transition to parenthood
Empathy and social adaptation in preschoolers exposed to maternal depression
The maternal brain
Hormones, autonomic response, and social interactive behavior during the first stages of romantic love
Oxytocin and human fatherhood
Effects of maternal postpartum depression on children’s psychopathology, cortisol, and oxytocin at six years
Effects of maternal postpartum depression on stress reactivity and executive functions at ten years
Mothering, fathering and the development of emotion regulation in preschoolers with high-functioning ASD
Self and co-regulation in preschoolers with ASD
Oxytocin impact on trauma exposed veterans
Fathering in the context of chronic maternal depression
Effects of maternal postpartum depression on child well-being, oxytocin, and synchrony at ten years
Maternal postpartum depression and the neural basis of empathy in preadolescence