Jordan Grafman, PhD

Jordan Grafman, PhD

Director, Brain Injury Research
Chief, Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory
Professor, Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Neurology, Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer’s Center

About Me

Since the latter part of 2012, Dr. Grafman has been the director of Brain Injury Research at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab and is on faculty at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in the Departments of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and the Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer’s Disease Center as well as the Department of Psychology in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences. Before joining Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, Dr. Grafman was briefly director of Traumatic Brain Injury Research at the Kessler Foundation in West Orange New Jersey. Prior to that appointment in 2011, Dr. Grafman was Chief of the Cognitive Neuroscience Section at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke in Bethesda, Maryland for many years. His investigation of brain function and behavior contributes to advances in medicine, rehabilitation, and psychology, and informs ethics, law, philosophy, and health policy. His study of the human prefrontal cortex and cognitive neuroplasticity incorporates neuroimaging and genetics, an approach that is expanding our knowledge of the impact of traumatic brain injury, as well as other diseases that impair brain function.


Shirley Ryan AbilityLab

355 East Erie

Chicago, IL 60611

Education & Training



    1972 - 1974
    Psychology, Sonoma State University, Rohnert Park, California
    1975 - 1981
    Human Neuropsychology, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Recent Publications

Left rostrolateral prefrontal cortex lesions reduce suicidal ideation in penetrating traumatic brain injury.
Pardini M, Grafman J, Raymont V, Amore M, Serafini G, Koenigs M, Krueger F
CNS spectrums
doi: 10.1017/S1092852918001694
Anterior insula lesions and alexithymia reduce the endorsements of everyday altruistic attitudes.
Chau A, Zhong W, Gordon B, Krueger F, Grafman J
doi: 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2018.07.002
Changes in discourse structure over time following traumatic brain injury.
Lindsey A, Mozeiko J, Krueger F, Grafman J, Coelho C
doi: 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2018.08.030

Honors & Awards

  • Coleman Chair in Rehabilitation Medicine
    Coleman Foundation, 2013
  • Research Award of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
    Humboldt Foundation, 2012 - 2013
  • National Institutes of Health Director's Award
    National Institutes of Health, 2010
  • National Institutes of Health Award of Merit
    National Institutes of Health, 1992
  • Defense Meritorious Service Medal
    United States Air Force, 1986

Professional Affiliations

  • Co-Editor
    Cortex, 2000

Research Interests

  • Functions of the Human Frontal Lobes
  • Recovery of Function & Neuroplasticity
  • Executive and Social Functions
  • Non-Invasive Brain Stimulation
  • Structural and Functional Neuroimaging


  • "MRI-navigated 3-channel TMS with 64-channel EEG instrument
    National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, 2015 - 2020
  • Understanding and Modifying Social/Emotiona Behavior ('Prefrontal' Functions)
    John Hopkins University, SOM
    , 2016 - 2020
  • Cerebral Autoregulation monitoring to reduce brain injury from cardiac surgery
    Northwestern University
    , 2016 - 2019
  • Center of Excellence for Advanced Bioprogrammable Nanomaterials (C-ABN)
    Northwestern University, 2015 - 2018
  • Genetic Influences on Epileptogensis and Biosusceptibility to Post-Traumatic Epilepsy
    University of Pittsburgh
    , 2017 - 2019

My Lab

Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory

We focus on executive function and social cognition, their representations in the brain, and ways to improve these functions in patients with brain damage.

view lab