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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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As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters,  SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking how brain science can improve our health and our lives.

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