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Nelson Calderon: Let’s spread brain fitness knowledge in developing countries

Nelson Calderon Bonilla

Nel­son Calderon Bonil­la

Please tell us about your inter­est in applied brain sci­ence. What areas are you most inter­est­ed in? 
I’m most­ly inter­est­ed in how to har­ness neu­ro­plas­tic­i­ty to dri­ve pos­i­tive and endur­ing changes on the brain.

What excites you the most about your job?
As a tele­com exec­u­tive and coor­di­na­tor of the Brain Inter­est Group in Men­sa Colom­bia, I’m very inter­est­ed in the pos­si­bil­i­ties of apply­ing what we know about the brain to improve qual­i­ty of life on devel­op­ing coun­tries.

What is one impor­tant thing you are work­ing on now? 
Cur­rent­ly we’re work­ing on a Think Tank to dis­cuss lat­est about the brain and gen­er­ate projects to spread brain fit­ness knowl­edge among Men­sa mem­bers and the gen­er­al pop­u­la­tion.

What are 1–2 key things you’d like every per­son to under­stand regard­ing his/ her own brain and mind, that you think is com­mon­ly mis­rep­re­sent­ed or not addressed in the pop­u­lar media? 
First, that reg­u­lar exer­cise is one of the best ways to have a sharp brain, fit body and over­all health. Sec­ond, that we can train and trans­form our brains in a sim­i­lar way as we train our bod­ies.

Where do you see clear “low-hang­ing fruit” to enhance behav­ioral and brain health based on neu­ro­science and inno­va­tion? 
I see two imme­di­ate oppor­tu­ni­ties: Expand and improve exer­cise pro­grams in schools, and spread cog­ni­tive train­ing tools via com­put­ers and smart­phones.

What sur­prised you the most at the 2013 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit? 
The vast and ambi­tious scope of the Human Brain Project.

Final­ly, what do YOU do to stay sharp? 
I exer­cise and med­i­tate dai­ly, and do my best to keep learn­ing chal­leng­ing things (neu­ro­science!). I also pro­tect time to relax, unplug and chill out.

2013 SharpBrains Summit—This con­ver­sa­tion is part of the inter­view series with Speak­ers and Par­tic­i­pants in the 2013 Sharp­Brains Vir­tual Sum­mit (Sep­tem­ber 19–20th). Pre­vi­ous inter­views include:

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