Representing Today's Visionaries with Tomorrow's Ideas

Joel Salinas

praise for Joel Salinas

“Joel Salinas takes his reader into the harrowing, tender, and sometimes brutal realities of living with mirror-touch synesthesia. But the book’s reach is wider and deeper than the condition. It is nothing less than a reflection on human empathy itself, a book for everyone.” – Siri Hustvedt, author of What I Loved

“[Mirror Touch is] a brilliant book that elegantly combines personal narrative with insights into the underlying science.”  – V.S. Ramachandran, author of The Tell-Tale Brain and Phantoms in the Brain

“[Salinas] writes with depth and candor and immediacy, as well as a great deal of compassion in the Oliver Sacks tradition.… I predict this book will be a classic not only in the synesthesia literature, but in all of neuroscience.” —Psychology Today

“Vicarious and enthralling…. A rich, fascinating portrait of extraordinary sensory awareness.” – Kirkus Reviews

Dr. Joel Salinas is an Assistant Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School and Chief of the Henry and Allison McCance Center for Brain Health at the Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Neurology. He is a practicing neurologist, researcher, and author who conducts research in social and behavioral epidemiology to understand the complex interplay between social relationships and brain health. His work has been featured on CNN, NPR, The Wall Street Journal, and in a recent TED Talk.

Dr. Salinas’ interest in brain health stems from his childhood diagnosis with synesthesia, a complex neurologic trait based on genetic and biological brain differences that causes him to perceive each of his senses as a mix with one or more of his other senses—from hearing colors and tasting sounds to experiencing people as numbers. A manifestation of his synesthesia causes him to physically feel what the people around him physically feel. If you were to touch your cheek, he would simultaneously, involuntarily, and vividly experience the same sensation of being touched on his own cheek. He chronicles his experiences as a doctor living with synesthesia in his recent best-selling book, Mirror Touch: A Memoir of Synesthesia and the Secret Life of the Brain.

Dr. Salinas holds a Masters in Sociology from Cornell University and a medical degree from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. He conducted his neurology residency at the Massachusetts General Hospital and the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and completed a combined research and clinical fellowship in Behavioral Neurology and Neuropsychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Creative Ideation and Collaboration Workshop

This course will combine presentation, evidence-based simulation exercises, and micro-skills exercises to improve participants’ creative and empathetic skills in the personal and professional context to achieve organization goals in project collaboration, value-creation, and innovative design.

After this Workshop participants will:

  • Have a set of strategies for how to handle common barriers for creative ideation and collaboration that are applicable inside and outside of traditional work environments
  • Learn outcome-driven frameworks to systematically and efficiently approach complex problem-solving as an individual and within teams
  • Learn a shared vocabulary to enhance organizational capacity-building and lesson-sharing around creativity, empathy, and new markets
  • Have an increased awareness of their own strengths and weaknesses as creatives, collaborators, and team leaders



Mirror Touch: Notes From a Doctor Who Can Feel Your Pain



Joel challenges the standard definition of “normal” in a recent TED Talk


Joel explains mirror touch in a recent appearance on the TV series The DRs