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The university’s Waisman Center, in which CIHM is housed, has one of the best laboratories in the world for the kind of brain imaging research that Davidson directs. The lab has an impressive armamentarium of hi-tech tools to study the brain, but overall the facility doesn’t have the cold, clinical feel of a research institution. For one thing, the scientists—starting with the youthful and jaunty Davidson himself—don’t stalk the halls absentmindedly, looking at the floor. They’re cheerful and energetic and they greet you with interest. Most of them engage in the practices they’re studying. It’s also the only scientific research facility that contains a world-class meditation room, complete with comfy and sustainable cork flooring. Davidson wanted the center’s facilities to convey the contemplative qualities of the practices that are studied there. It does.

The Healthy Minds center has three aims:
Research—both basic and translational, intended to lead to more widespread incorporation of practices that nourish positive qualities of mind by various parts of society;
Outreach—the center conducts projects with members of the local community (including educators, parents, and children) in the context of doing research, and globally communicates about the work through talks and the CIHM website (investigatinghealthyminds. org);
Training—conducted for postdoctoral fellows and senior scientists on site, as well as for participants in research conferences.

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