Daphna Joel received her PhD in psychology at Tel-Aviv University in 1998, and joined the faculty thereafter having received the Alon Fellowship for young Israeli scientists. Professor Joel is presently head of the university's Psychobiology graduate program, chair of the PhD Committee at the School of Psychological Sciences, and a member of the Sagol School of Neuroscience.

Joel's high-profile research into the workings of the brain has led her to argue that the differentiation between "male brains" and "female brains" does not exist, citing experiments which demonstrate that animal brains can morph from supposedly "male" to "female" structure - and vice versa - under conditions of stress.

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