Document Type


Publication Date



Over the last six decades, an in-group with ideological and financial stakes has been conducting sub-par research to develop an ostensibly effective clinical intervention: EEG-neurofeedback. More recently, however, a string of independent studies featuring increased scientific rigour and tighter experimental controls has challenged the foundation on which EEG-neurofeedback stands. Earlier this year, Brain published one of the most robust EEG-neurofeedback experiments to date (Schabus et al., 2017), which sparked a flurry of correspondence concerning the therapeutic value of neurofeedback (Fovet et al., 2017; Schabus, 2017); notably, a parallel discussion continues in Lancet Psychiatry (Micoulaud-Franchi and Fovet, 2016; Thibault and Raz, 2016a; Schönenberg et al., 2017). However, to effectively interpret the pro and con viewpoints, one must appreciate the peculiar culture surrounding the field of EEG-neurofeedback. The present breezy piece provides little-discussed yet highly relevant contextual information often absent from formal papers and technical reports.


This is a pre-copy-editing, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in Brain following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version

Thibault RT, Lifshitz M, Raz A. The climate of neurofeedback: Scientific rigour and the perils of ideology. Brain. 2018;141(2):e11. doi: 10.1093/brain/awx330

is available online at DOI: 10.1093/brain/awx330


The authors



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.