Dr Sharon Morein-Zamir

Senior Lecturer

Faculty:Faculty of Science and Engineering

School:Psychology and Sport Science

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Brain & Cognition

Sharon’s research aims to better characterize how individuals control their behaviour and mental processes, and to understand the mechanisms underlying lack of control and the implications of the resulting impairments.

View Sharon's profile at Cambridge Neuroscience
View Sharon's Google Scholar Citations  


Sharon has examined the control of actions and attention in healthy individuals and in clinical groups characterised by impaired control processes, such as individuals with increased compulsivity (eg with OCD or hoarding disorder) or impulsivity (eg in ADHD or stimulant drug users). She investigates behavioural mechanisms and neural correlates related to control and attention across numerous behavioural paradigms, effector systems, and taking a transdiagnostic approach across different patient groups.

Research interests

  • Cognitive control and executive functioning – control of thoughts, attention and behaviour including response inhibition and cognitive flexibility
  • Certainty seeking behaviors such as checking and how these are influenced by state variables such as stress
  • Cognitive control and impulsivity in ADHD
  • Cognitive control and impulsivity in stimulant users
  • Compulsive behaviour and obsessive thinking in OCD

Areas of research supervision

  • Cognition using quantitative research techniques
  • Emotion, motivation and executive functioning
  • Experimental studies of coping with uncertainty


Sharon teaches on the postgraduate modules Quantitative Research Methods, Issues in Scientific Research, Imaging and Diagnostics, and Developmental Psychopathology - and, at undergraduate level, Research Techniques for Psychology.


  • MA and PhD Psychology, University of British Columbia, Canada
  • BA and MA Cognitive Psychology, University of Ben-Gurion, Israel

Memberships, editorial boards

Selected recent publications

Morein-Zamir S, Shahper S, Fineberg NA, Eisele V, Eagle DM, Urcelay G, Robbins TW (2018) Free operant observing in humans: a translational approach to compulsive certainty seeking. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 70, pp.2052-2069.

Morein-Zamir S, Voon V, Dodds CM, Sule A, van Niekerk J, Sahakian BJ, Robbins TW (2016) Differential functional abnormalities associated with stopping and shifting in Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Psychological Medicine, 46, pp. 829-40.

Morein-Zamir S, Simon Jones P, Bullmore ET, Robbins TW, Ersche KD (2015) Take it or leave it: prefrontal control in recreational cocaine users. Translational Psychiatry 5:e582.

Sahakian BJ & Morein-Zamir S, (2015) Pharmacological cognitive enhancement: treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders and lifestyle use by healthy people. Lancet Psychiatry 2, pp. 357-62.

Media experience

Media spanning local, national and international outlets including radio (BBC Essex, 2018), printed and electronic media; appearing in articles in Wall Street Journal, The Guardian (UK), Times Higher Education, and The Globe and Mail (Canada).