James R. Doty

Keynote Speaker
Photo: James Doty

James R. Doty, M.D., FACS, FICS is a Clinical Professor of neurosurgery at Stanford University and founder and director of the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education (CCARE), a part of the Stanford Institute of Neuro-Innovation and Translational Neurosciences. He is the New York Times bestselling author of Into the Magic Shop: A Neurosurgeon's Quest to Discover the Mysteries of the Brain and the Secrets of the Heart published by Penguin Random House in 2016. This award-winning book about the extraordinary things that can happen when we harness the power of both the brain and the heart, has been translated in 19 languages.

As Director of CCARE, Dr. Doty has collaborated on numerous research projects focused on compassion and altruism. Key topic areas include: the use of neuro-economic models to assess altruism; the use of the CCARE-developed compassion cultivation training in individuals and its effect; the assessment of compassionate and altruistic judgment utilizing implanted brain electrodes; and the use of optogenetic techniques to assess nurturing pathways in rodents.

Presently, he is developing collaborative projects to assess the effect of compassion training on immunologic and other physiologic determinates of health. These encompass the use of mentoring as a method of instilling compassion in students and the use of compassion training to decrease pain.

Dr. Doty is also an inventor, entrepreneur and philanthropist whose charitable contributions have supported Children as the Peacemakers, Global Healing, the Pachamama Alliance and Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley, among other nonprofit organizations. Additionally, he has endowed chairs at universities such as Stanford University and his alma mater, Tulane University. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Dalai Lama Foundation, of which he is Chairman, and the Charter for Compassion International, of which he is Vice-chair.

He spent nine years on active duty service in the U.S. Army Medical Corp including in Oahu, Hawaii.