Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.
Skip to main content


Rafal Bogacz graduated in computer science at Wroclaw University of Technology in Poland. Afterwards he did a PhD in computational neuroscience at the University of Bristol, and worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Princeton University, USA, jointly in the Departments of Applied Mathematics and Psychology. In 2004 he came back to Bristol where he worked as a Lecturer and then a Reader. Rafal moved to the University of Oxford in 2013.

Awards Training and Qualifications

1998 – MEng, Wroclaw University of Technology, Poland

2001 – PhD, University of Bristol

Rafal Bogacz

Professor of Computational Neuroscience

Computational models of decision making, Control of deep brain stimulation

Research Summary

My research is in the area of computational neuroscience, which uses mathematical models to understand how computations in neural circuits give rise to human and animal behaviour. My work focuses on the computational models of brain circuits underlying action selection and decision making. These circuits include a set of subcortical nuclei known as the basal ganglia, which has been intensively studied because it is affected by Parkinson’s disease.

My research concerns models of brain decision networks in both health and disease. My group investigates how the cortico-basal-ganglia network selects actions and learns from their outcomes. We also employ mathematical models to study how to best control deep brain stimulation in order to minimize the excessive oscillations in activity are generated in Parkinson’s disease.

Audio and video links

Interview on deep learning in the brain for Brain Inspired podcast

Diffusion model of decision making - talk during Neuroinformatics 2019

Video abstract of a paper on learning payoffs and costs of actions

Sources of funding

Medical Research Council

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council

Recent publications

More publications