Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Default Network

  • Lawrence H. SweetEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_1284


Default mode network; Task-negative network


The default network is a system of brain regions that is active when there are no external cognitive demands. The greatest brain activity is observed in this system during unstructured rest, and the least activity is observed during tasks that require concerted external focus. The existence and core location of the default network are widely accepted; however, its function and subsystems remain under investigation. The default network is distributed bilaterally and is comprised of at least two core midline regions, the posterior cingulate cortex and medial frontal gyrus, plus the inferior parietal lobule and areas in the medial and lateral temporal lobe.

Historical Background

Identification of the default network emerged unexpectedly from functional neuroimaging studies that administered paradigms with a variety of active cognitive challenges. Functional neuroimaging designs frequently sample brain activity during resting...

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References and Readings

  1. Buckner, R. L., Andrews-Hanna, J. R., & Schacter, D. L. (2008). The brain’s default network: Anatomy, function, and relevance to disease. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1124, 1–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of GeorgiaAthensUSA