Alyssa Picchini Schaffer

Neuroscientist in Manhattan, New York

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Alyssa Picchini Schaffer is a marathon-running, novel-reading, coffee-drinking, afternoon-nap-loving scientist. She is passionate about addressing significant problems in science by combining broad perspectives and attention to detailed scientific inquiry. Alyssa joined the Simons Foundation in 2014 to manage the Simons Collaboration on the Global Brain. Before joining Simons, Alyssa was the Scientific Director of TEDMED, an independent licensee of TED focused on science, health and medicine. From 2010-2012, Alyssa was a AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. She is also a Columbia University Alumna, earning her PhD from the Pharmacology Department. Her research passion lies in understanding the biological basis of psychiatric disease. While at Columbia, Alyssa investigated the cell biology, fate specification, and environmental regulation of neural stem cells in the adult brain. When not dabbling in Italian, she loves to focus her energy on empowering underprivileged teens, salsa dancing, and yoga.

  • Work
    • Simons Foundation
  • Education
    • Columbia University
    • Lafayette College