Alyssa Picchini Schaffer is a senior scientist at the Simons Foundation, where she manages the Simons Collaboration on the Global Brain (SCGB). The SCGB aims to expand our understanding of internal brain processes through computational approaches and cutting-edge experimental technologies in order to discover the nature, role and mechanisms of neural activity that produce cognition. Picchini Schaffer is a neuroscientist and science communicator with an exceptionally diverse background and expertise in neural stem cell biology, pharmacology, policy and media across business, government and academic sectors. She is passionate about fostering collaboration among multidisciplinary teams to address significant questions in neuroscience. Before joining the foundation, Picchini Schaffer was scientific director of TEDMED, an independent division of TED focused on science, health and medicine. She earned her Ph.D. from Columbia University and is an alumna of the AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellowship and Lafayette College.