BSP 116: Norman Doidge on Brain Plasticity

This month psychiatrist Norman Doidge returns to the Brain Science Podcast to discuss his new book The Brain's Way of Healing: Remarkable Discoveries and Recoveries from the Frontiers, which is a follow-up to his best-seller The Brain That Changes Itself (BSP 26). In this interview Dr. Doidge and I focus on the underlying principles of brain plasticity and their clinical implications. Although brain plasticity is well-established in the research community it has not yet fully penetrated clinical medicine where old views, which seen the brain as largely fixed in adulthood, make it difficult for new approaches to reach most patients.

Unfortunately, brain plasticity is an easy target for hucksters and others selling unproven methods, but Dr. Doidge has done extensive research into the methods featured in this book. One of the obstacles that we did not discuss is that these methods require active participation, not passively taking expensive new drugs.

How to get this episode:

  • FREE: audio mp3 (click to stream, right click to download)

  • Episode Transcript [Buy for $1]

  • Premium Subscribers have unlimited access to all old episodes and transcripts.

  • New episodes of the Brain Science Podcast are always FREE. All episodes posted after January 1, 2013, are free. See the individual show notes for links the audio files.



  • Next month's episode will be an interview with Dr. Michael Gazzaniga talking about his latest book Tales from Both Sides of the Brain: A Life in Neuroscience.

  • I will be speaking at the 74th Annual Meeting of the American Humanist Association, which is scheduled for May 7-10, 2015 in Denver, Colorado.

  • I have recently updated my other website at and I would appreciate your feedback.

  • Reminder: the 25 most recent episodes of the Brain Science Podcast are always free, but Premium subscribers have unlimited access to all back episodes and transcripts. The Brain Science Podcast Mobile App is FREE. It is a great way to consume both free and premium content (since this will not appear in iTunes or other podcasting apps).

  • Please share your feedback about this episode by sending email to or going to the Brain Science Podcast Discussion Forum at You can also post to our fan pages on Facebook or Google+. I am looking for help with these community pages so please email me at if you are interested.