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Alvaro Fernandez
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Alvaro Fer­nan­dez, named a Young Global Leader in 2012 by the World Eco­nomic Forum, is the CEO of Sharp­, a lead­ing inde­pen­dent mar­ket research firm track­ing health and well-being appli­ca­tions of brain science. A sought-after national speaker, he has been quoted by The New York Times, The Wall Street Jour­nal, CNN, Reuters, and Asso­ci­ated Press, among oth­ers.

Mr. Fer­nan­dez is the co-author of the new book The SharpBrains Guide to Brain Fitness: How to Optimize Brain Health and Performance at Any Age (284 pages; April 2013), rec­og­nized as a “Best Book” by AARP, and the editor-in-chief of the mar­ket report “The Dig­i­tal Brain Health Mar­ket 2012–2020: Web-based, mobile and biometrics-based tech­nol­ogy to assess, mon­i­tor and enhance cog­ni­tion and brain func­tion­ing." He also wrote the acclaimed arti­cles Prepar­ing Soci­ety for the Cog­ni­tive Age, pub­lished in Fron­tiers in Neu­ro­science, The Busi­ness and Ethics of the Brain Fit­ness Boom, pub­lished in Gen­er­a­tions, and co-authored The Global Agenda Coun­cil on the Age­ing Soci­ety: Pol­icy Prin­ci­ples, pub­lished in Global Pol­icy.

A native of Spain, Mr. Fernandez came to the US to complete a dual degree MBA/ MA in Edu­ca­tion at Stan­ford Uni­ver­sity, and now lives with his family in Washington, DC.

Detailed LinkedIn Profile: Alvaro Fernandez.

Entries by Alvaro Fernandez

20 Must-Know Facts To Harness Neuroplasticity And Improve Brain Health

(1) Comments | Posted June 21, 2016 | 10:37 AM


June is Alzheimer's & Brain Awareness Month, so let me share these 20 Must-Know Facts to Harness Neuroplasticity & Improve Brain Health that come from the hundreds of scientific and medical studies we analyzed to prepare the book The SharpBrains Guide...

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10 Common Brain Health and Brain Training Myths, Debunked

(0) Comments | Posted April 15, 2016 | 3:32 PM

Given all the interest in--and confusion around---the topics of brain training, neuroplasticity and brain health, let's debunk ten myths that remain surprisingly popular.

MYTH 1. Genes deter­mine the fate of our brains.

Fact: Life­long brain plas­tic­ity means that our lifestyles and behaviors play a significant role in...

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The Real Brain Game: Harnessing Neuroplasticity to Improve Our Lives

(0) Comments | Posted March 22, 2016 | 11:47 AM

2016-03-21-1458585297-8640313-brainGames_newseason.jpgIn preparation for the new season of National Geographic's Brain Games, their producers asked me to participate in a virtual roundtable around this thought-provoking question:

Do you think individuals can train their brain to respond in a particular way to certain situations, or...
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Brain Fitness Tips to Improve Attention and Memory in 2016

(1) Comments | Posted December 31, 2015 | 3:25 PM


Concentration -- or atten­tion -- and mem­ory are two cru­cial men­tal skills and are directly related. In fact, many mem­ory com­plaints have noth­ing to do with the actual abil­ity to remem­ber things: They come from a fail­ure to focus prop­erly on...

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8 Quick Brain Teasers to Challenge Your Attention and Memory

(0) Comments | Posted December 1, 2015 | 2:12 PM

Look­ing for some fun, and free, cog­ni­tive stim­u­la­tion this Decem­ber? Here you have a few quick brain teasers to challenge your atten­tion and your work­ing mem­ory-the abil­ity to keep infor­ma­tion in your mind while work­ing on inte­grat­ing, pro­cess­ing it.

Given them a good try...they are not as easy as...

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Neurotechnology can improve our lives...if we first address these Privacy and Informed Consent issues

(0) Comments | Posted November 12, 2015 | 8:00 PM

In conjunction with the new National Geographic program "Breakthrough: Decoding the Brain," coming this Sunday, November 15, at 9 pm ET, I was asked to provide my perspective on a very provocative question:

What if scientists were able to implant or erase memories? For some, like those suffering from...

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The Digital Revolution Meets the Human Brain

(4) Comments | Posted June 10, 2015 | 4:15 PM

2015-06-10-1433967024-5403955-brain_dt.jpgOur brain is at the core of everything we do, from the every-day decisions we make to the epic emotions we feel when we fall in love. Given its vital role in our lives, it is great news that two of the most well-funded...

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To Succeed at School, Children With ADHD Need Both Medication and Non-Medication Treatments

(1) Comments | Posted April 6, 2015 | 11:51 AM

Aca­d­e­mic prob­lems are extremely com­mon in chil­dren with ADHD, and often the issue that leads to refer­ral for an ADHD evaluation.

Aca­d­e­mic out­comes can be mea­sured in two dif­fer­ent ways -- aca­d­e­mic achieve­ment and aca­d­­emic per­for­mance -- and both are com­pro­mised in chil­dren with ADHD. Aca­d­e­mic achieve­ment refers to the...

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5 Reasons Why Parents of Children With ADHD Need to Become Proactive and Well-Informed Advocates of Their Care

(0) Comments | Posted February 20, 2015 | 2:05 PM

Co-authored by Dr. David Rabiner

Most children with ADHD receive their care from community-based pediatricians, so it is especially important for that care to be consistent with best-practice guidelines. Unfortunately, all too often it is not.

The guidelines

Here is a brief summary of some key ADHD guidelines published by...

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4 Fun, Quick Brain Teasers To Test Your Cognitive Skills...And Your Cognitive Biases

(0) Comments | Posted January 20, 2015 | 1:57 PM

If you have a few minutes, you may enjoy trying these quick brain teasers.

First please con­sider Linda, a 31-year-old woman, sin­gle and bright. When she was a stu­dent, in high school and in col­lege too, she was deeply involved in social jus­tice issues, and also par­tic­i­pated in envi­ron­men­tal protests....

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High-Tech for Brain Training: Top 12 News in 2014

(0) Comments | Posted December 31, 2014 | 4:20 PM

Unless you live in a cave, you are well aware of all the growing interest in, and controversies around, the topic of brain training, especially whether technology can enhance -- or hinder -- our brain health and cognitive performance.


A little perspective may...

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10 Ways to Improve Health Based on the Latest Non-Invasive Neurotechnologies

(0) Comments | Posted October 22, 2014 | 4:43 PM


Last month I had the fortune to join over 1,900 pioneers from 90 countries at the World Economic Forum's Annual Meeting in Tianjin, China, to discuss how innovation can improve the state of the world.

Throughout hundreds of panels, workshops, private...

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Top 15 Insights About Neuroplasticity, Emotions and Lifelong Learning

(1) Comments | Posted May 7, 2014 | 8:47 AM

What does mod­ern brain and mind science have to offer to improve edu­ca­tion, health and qual­ity of life? Here you have some of the most pop­u­lar high­lights about neuroplasticity, emotion and cognition from my book The SharpBrains Guide to Brain Fit­ness, cour­tesy of the thou­sands of read­ers enjoy­ing...

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10 Things Your Brain Does and You Probably Didn't Know About

(0) Comments | Posted March 26, 2014 | 12:27 PM

Most of the time, we are so used to our brain functioning smoothly and automatically that we don't take a lot of time to think about what is going on underneath. Walking, eating, discussing a book... all of these things seem very natural and easy, but in truth, each and...

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4 Essential Yet Overlooked Facts About Your Brain and Your Health

(0) Comments | Posted December 23, 2013 | 11:09 AM

An aspiring clarinetist begins by getting a sense of the way the instrument's sounds are produced by the air she blows through it. A driver must be acquainted with various vehicle fundamentals, such as adding gas, accelerating, and reading the speedometer. It is no different with the brain. Maximizing your...

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Where Brain Health Meets Digital Health and Big Data

(0) Comments | Posted September 18, 2013 | 12:15 PM

The year 2013 is an exciting time to have a brain. Over the past two decades, our under­stand­ing of the human brain has grown exponentially. Fueled by this new infor­ma­tion, the num­ber and vari­ety of brain appli­ca­tions avail­able com­mer­cially is explod­ing, poten­tially trans­form­ing the way we care for our brains...

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Book Review of Ungifted: Intelligence Redefined

(0) Comments | Posted July 29, 2013 | 10:19 AM

Just a couple of weeks ago I had a discussion with several psychologists and neurologists who seemed to share the opinion that "brain fitness" is a meaningless concept and pursuit. On the one hand, they thought, intelligence is a fixed trait and no intervention so far has shown to reliably...

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Could Stress Actually Be Damaging Your Brain? 6 Tips to Build Resilience

(10) Comments | Posted May 20, 2013 | 8:08 AM

These days, we all live under tremendous stress -- economic challenges, job demands, family tension, always-on technology and the 24-hour news cycle all contribute to ceaseless worry, many times over things that are completely beyond our personal control. While many have learned to simply "live with it," this ongoing stress...

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Debunking 10 Brain Fitness and Brain Training Myths

(1) Comments | Posted March 29, 2013 | 3:54 PM

Let's debunk 10 myths about brain fitness and brain training that remain enterprisingly popular.

Top 10 brain fit­ness and brain train­ing myths, debunked:

Myth 1. Genes deter­mine the fate of our brains.
Fact: Life­long brain plas­tic­ity means that our lifestyles and behav­iors play a sig­nif­i­cant role in how our...

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Retooling Brain Care With Low-Cost, Data-Driven Technologies

(21) Comments | Posted January 25, 2013 | 8:00 AM

Click here to read an original op-ed from the TED speaker who inspired this post and watch the TEDTalk below.

While sophisticated neuroimaging techniques such as fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging) provide a significant boost in our understanding of the brain -- and sexy research frequently...

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