Understanding the Brain

Roger Bingham

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Roger Bingham

Born 1948
Residence La Jolla, CA
Nationality British
Fields Neuroscience and Society; Science of Educating; Communication of Science
Alma mater University College, London, B.Sc.[1][2]
Known for Co-founder and director of The Science Network (TSN), Creator and Host of television series The Human Quest, Co-author of The Origin of Minds: Evolution, Uniqueness, and the New Science of the Self and Co-author of science-based novel Wildcard
Notable awards National Magazine Award, American Psychological Association Award, Writer’s Guild of America Award, LA Emmy

Roger Bingham is a British science communicator, writer, and public television producer and host. He is co-founder and director of The Science Network and creator of the Beyond Belief conferences. Bingham created the KCET Science and Society Unit.[3] There he wrote and produced the Frontiers of the Mind series, which included "The Addicted Brain", "The Sexual Brain", "The Time of Our Lives", and "Inside Information".[4] He has co-authored two books, Wild Card (1974) and The Origin of Minds: Evolution, Uniqueness, and the New Science of the Self (Harmony, 2002).

In 1996, Bingham hosted and co-wrote the PBS television series The Human Quest (1996). Philip Hefner wrote that the series "represents some of the best and most sensitive popular discussion of cutting-edge science available".[5] The Human Quest episode The Nature Of Human Nature won a Writers Guild of America Award.[6] The Human Quest was built on the conceptual framework of evolutionary psychology which Bingham began to distance himself from in the mid-1990s.[7]

From 1995-96, Bingham was a visiting associate at Caltech in Biology and interacted with neuroscientists, including evolutionary neuroscientist, John Allman. Bingham and Peggy La Cerra presented an alternative to the model of evolutionary psychology in their book, The Origin of Minds, (Harmony, 2002). This model was based on the concept of adaptive representational networks (ARN). According to this theory, these networks encode the history of an individual's behavioral successes and failures in relationship to the energy costs of any particular behavior. Hence, memory becomes an accounting mechanism for computing the energy costs of behavior.[8] La Cerra and Bingham called this model "Theoretical Evolutionary Neuroscience.".[9] After the publication of "The Origin of Minds," Bingham turned his attention to developing a platform for science communication; he has not published any further work in the field of neuroscience.

In 2003, Roger Bingham and Terry Sejnowski initiated a science education project that became known as The Science Network.[10] The Science Network (TSN) is a web-based organization concerned with science and its impact on society. The first event sponsored by TSN was a site conference on stem cells in 2004.[11] Roger Bingham serves as the director of the The Science Network.

Bingham is currently an affiliate of the Computational Neurobiology Laboratory at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and the Institute for Neural Computation at UC San Diego.[3]


  • The Origin of Minds: Evolution, Uniqueness, and the New Science of the Self (2002) Peggy La Cerra and Roger Bingham
  • Wild Card (1974) Raymond Hawkey and Roger Bingham


External links


  1. Caltech Campus Catalog,1996
  2. Memories of 68
  3. 3.0 3.1 Biomarine: Roger Bingham [1] (21 May 2009)
  4. Holdings: Frontiers of the Mind [2] (21 May 2009)
  5. Stories Science Tells: Defining the Human Quest by Philip Hefner, The Christian Century [3] (27 May 2009)
  6. 6.0 6.1 IMDB Awards Roger Bingham [4] (21 May 2009).
  7. Edge Question 2008: What Have You Changed Your Mind About? Why?
  8. Human Nature Review, 2000, Vol 3, 440-447 [5]
  9. The adaptive nature of the human neurocognitive architecture: An alternative model, PNAS [6]
  10. Wired: Are You Ready for Some Science? [7] (21 May 2009)
  11. Stem Cells: Science, Ethics and Politics at the Crossroads [8] (21 May 2009)
  12. Proceedings of the American Psychological Association, Incorporated, for the year 1991 [9] (21 May 2009).
  13. National Magazine Award Searchable Database [10] (21 May 2009).
  14. Top Emmy totals: KCAL, KABC