I am currently a Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University. I am also a member of the Integrative Neuroscience faculty, and a fellow of the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center, the Vanderbilt Brain Institute and the Vanderbilt Center for Integrative and Cognitive Neuroscience.

For more information about my music see the DZ Productions page.


My lab, the Affective Neuroscience Laboratory (aka the Zald Lab), studies the neural basis of emotional processing. In particular, this work examines the functions of the orbitofrontal cortex and amygdala. In recent years these interests have led me into the study of a wide range of topics related to mapping the different functional areas of the orbitofrontal cortex using PET imaging and fMRI techniques. This includes studies of sensory functioning (particularly olfaction and taste), cognitive functions (particularly working memory), and reward learning.


My background includes training in clinical psychology, neuropsychology and neuroimaging. I received a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Minnesota in 1997, working with several faculty including Richard Depue, William Grove, Auke Tellegen and William Iacono. I completed an APA accredited internship in clinical neuropsychology at the Ann Arbor VA Medical Center/University of Michigan Hospital Program in Neuropsychology. I then took a post-doctoral research fellowship in neuroimaging in the Division of Neuroscience Research, Departments of Psychiatry and Pharmacology at the University of Minnesota and the Cognitive Neuroimaging Unit at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center, where Jose Pardo served as my mentor.

Contact Information

Department of Psychology
325 Wilson Hall
111 21st Ave. South
Nashville, TN 37203-0009
Tel: 615-343-6076
Fax: 615-343-8449
Email (the most reliable way to reach me is usually by email)