Last updated on: 10/6/2014 | Author:

David N. Greenfield, PhD Biography

Founder of the Center for Internet and Technology Addiction
Pro to the question "Do Violent Video Games Contribute to Youth Violence?"

“My opinion on video game violence, which has a very powerful reward system wired into it, is that continued exposure desensitizes people to the experience of violence. But the other big issue, along with the reward structure, is that it teaches them a skill set that they might not otherwise develop, especially the first person shooter games. I have a real problem with giving people, in the name of entertainment, a technology that desensitizes violence, and then teaches you how to commit violence more accurately… and then elevating people’s levels of dopamine…

[T]hose studies have been absolutely supported. When you put people on a PET scanner or an functional MRI, their brain lights up like a Christmas tree when they’re doing these games, especially when they hit the reward points that are designed by the gamers to… keep people gaming because that’s how these games make their money.

Nothing is engaged in at the levels that I see gaming at, as a form of entertainment or dopamine elevation, unless it’s a narcotic like cocaine for instance. How could you be exposed to something this toxic and have it not affect you?”

“Growing Up GTA,”, Sep. 20, 2013

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Clinical Director, The Healing Center, LLC, Sep. 2005-present
  • Founder, The Center for Internet and Technology Addiction (CITA), Aug. 1999-present
  • Special Master, Connecticut Superior Court, Family Division, Sep. 1995-present
  • Contractor, Connecticut Superior Court, Family Division, Jan. 1994-present
  • Owner/Consultant, Practice Development Consultants, Jan. 1993-present
  • Consultant, Department of Public Health and Addiction Services, May 1993-present
  • Principal and Founder, Psychological Health Associates, LLC, Oct. 1986-Sep. 2005
  • President, Connecticut Psychological Association, Jan. 1998-Jan. 2001
  • Consulting and Supervisory Psychologist, Danbury Youth Services, Dec. 1988-2000
  • Consulting Psychologist, Newtown Youth Services, Mar. 1994-Sep. 1997
  • Chairperson, Hospital Practice Committee, Connecticut Psychological Association, Jan. 1993-Dec. 1995
  • Legislative Committee Member/Key Psychologist, Connecticut Psychological Association, Jan. 1990-Dec. 1995
  • Representative, American Psychological Association, Jan. 1993-Oct. 1994
  • Practice Directorate Coordinator, Connecticut Psychological Association, Jan. 1990-Jan. 1993
  • Chairperson, Program Committee, Connecticut Psychological Association, Mar. 1989- May 1991
  • PhD, Counseling Psychology, Texas Tech University, 1986
  • MA, Community Counseling, New York University, 1980
  • BA, Psychology, Ramapo College of New Jersey, 1978
  • Fellow, Connecticut Psychological Association
  • Clinical Member, The Connecticut Association for the Treatment of Sexual Offenders(CATSO)
  • Licensed Psychologist, Connecticut and New York
  • Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Connecticut
  • Member, National Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology
  • Recipient, Residents Teaching Award, University of Connecticut School of Medicine, 2006
  • Recipient, Heiser Presidential Award for Professional Psychology Advocacy, American Psychological Association, 1999
  • Recipient, Distinguished Contribution to Psychology in Connecticut Award, Connecticut Psychological Association, 1995
  • Consulting Psychologist, Midstate Psychotherapy Associates, Jan. 1989-Sep. 1989
  • Clinical Psychologist and Primary Clinician, Elmcrest Psychiatric Institute, Jan. 1989-Sep. 1989
  • Clinical Psychologist, Acute Psychiatry and Geriatric Units, Fairfield Hills Hospital, Oct. 1987-Jan. 1989
  • Post-Doctoral Fellow in Clinical Psychology, Fairfield Hills Hospital, Mar. 1987-Oct. 1987
  • Psychologist and Program Coordinator, Center for Psychological Services and Development, Virginia Commonwealth University, Oct. 1986-Mar. 1987
  • Clinical Psychology Intern, McGuire VA Medical Center, Sep. 1985-Sep. 1986
  • Assistant Psychologist,Lubbock Regional Mental Health and Mental Retardation Center, Mar. 1985-Aug. 1985
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Do Violent Video Games Contribute to Youth Violence?