Karen Dobkins, Ph.D.

Director, Human Experience & Awareness Laboratory


Born in New York City, Karen Dobkins received her Bachelor’s of Science in Biochemistry/Philosophy at Binghamton University in 1985, and her PhD in the Neurosciences Department at UCSD in 1992. She has been a professor of Psychology at UCSD since 1995. Although her background has been brain development in children, her most recent research focus is in the area of mindfulness and mental well-being.  Outside the world of research, she leads a workshop she created called “Principles of Clarity” aimed at improving well-being and healthy communication, and is also a co-founder of a company called “Spacious-Minds”, which builds conscious daycares through interior design and caregiver trainings.  She is a practitioner of  Yoga, a leader in “IntenSati” (which blends high intensity aerobics with call and response positive affirmations), as well as a Mindfulness coach.  She loves giving inspirational talks, including her Tedx “The Space between Kansas and Oz”, which is about loving “what is” while continuing to manifest your dreams.