Prof. Dr. Valeria Gazzola studied Biology in Parma and started her scientific career in Rizzolatti’s lab. She then moved to Groningen where she completed her PhD. She now is interested in the investigation of ‘shared circuits’. Such shared circuits reflect an automatic transformation of what other people do and feel into the neural representation of our own actions, emotions and sensations. Using fMRI she investigates the role of brain regions involved in the execution of actions during the perception of the actions of others; the role of the somatosensory cortices during the perception of other people being touched; and the role of emotional structures (e.g. amygdala and insula) during the observation of the emotional stimuli. The emphasis of the work is to investigate the idea that a single mechanism – shared circuits – could give valuable insights into all three domains.