James MacKillop


James MacKillopJames MacKillop
, PhD
Peter Boris Chair in Addictions Research
Director, Boris Centre for Addictions Research
Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences, McMaster
HRI Senior Scientist

James MacKillop trained as a clinical psychologist at the State University of New York at Binghamton and Brown University, and was previously a faculty member at Brown’s Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies and at the University of Georgia. Integrating concepts and methods from psychology, economics, and neuroscience, Dr. MacKillop conducts a program of research using behavioral economics and neuroeconomics to understand alcoholism, nicotine dependence, and other forms of addiction. An important aspect of his work is that it applies a translational approach, using methodologies that are consilient across levels of analysis from basic science to clinical applications. In doing so, Dr. MacKillop’s research seeks to leverage the perspectives and methods from several complementary fields to generate novel and unique insights into addiction.

To date, this work has generated over 120 peer-reviewed publications and other works, including two edited volumes, The Wiley-Blackwell Handbook of Addiction Psychopharmacology (2013, Wiley-Blackwell) and Genetic Influences on Addiction: An Intermediate Phenotype Approach (2013, MIT Press). He has been a Principal Investigator or Co-Investigator on numerous grants from the National Institutes of Health, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Alcoholic Beverage Medical Research Foundation, and other extramural funders, totaling over $15M in funding to date. Dr. MacKillop’s work has been cited over 2000 times and has been recognized by the G. Alan Marlatt Award for Distinguished Scientific Early Career Contributions from the Society for Addiction Psychology and the Young Investigator Award from the Research Society on Alcoholism.

In addition to his own research, Dr. MacKillop is active in peer review, serving as Field Editor for the journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, Associate Editor for Nicotine and Tobacco Research, Assistant Editor for Addiction, and as a standing member of the Clinical and Health Services Review Subcommittee of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.