Karel Svoboda

Karel Svoboda

Karel Svoboda, born 30 December 1965 in Czech Republic, received a PhD in biophysics from Harvard University. Currently he is a Group Leader at the Janelia Research Campus, Howard Hughes Medical Institute.  

Honors and awards

  • 2004 Society for Neuroscience, AstraZeneca Young Investigator Award
  • 2007 Docteur Honoris Causa, Universite de Lausanne
  • 2008 Gill Junior Investigator Award (Indiana University)
  • 2013 Foreign Member, Hungarian Academy of Sciences
  • 2014 Larry Katz Prize, Duke University

Research interest

My work is focused on the structure, function and plasticity of cortical circuits in behaving mice, mainly in the context of tactile sensation and decision-making based on tactile evidence. By recording from and manipulating defined cell types, we analyze the information flow in cortical circuits. Current areas of investigation include: i) the neural code underlying haptic sensation in the somatosensory cortex at the level of individual spikes; ii) the mechanisms of motor planning, short-term memory, and movement execution in the motor cortex and motor thalamus; iii) development of new optical, molecular, and behavioral methods for systems neuroscience.