Martha Herbert

Martha Herbert, PhD, MD is a medical doctor and pediatric neurologist.  She received her medical degree from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, her pediatric training at Cornell University-New York Hospital, and her neurology and child neurology training at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School.  Prior to her medical training she received a PhD in the History of Consciousness from the University of California, Santa Cruz.  She has been a thought leader in the whole body-brain-environment approach to the regeneration and recovery of health and resiliency, particularly in neurodevelopmental disorders. 

As a clinician Dr. Herbert aims to bridge the assessment and diagnostic resources of conventional and integrative/functional medicine, to use individualized lifestyle and nutritional interventions to reduce the “total load” on the system by removing obstacles and stressors and adding missing supports to optimal brain-body functioning.  Her approach is perhaps best described as a neurologist’s version of Bioregulatory Systems Medicine.  She aims to “pull the pieces together” by strategically synergizing this work with other therapeutic interventions to maximize resilience and the fulfillment of each person’s potential.  Her clinical approach is further described on   

As a researcher Dr. Herbert founded the collaborative, whole systems oriented TRANSCEND Research Program, at the Massachusetts General Hospital/MIT/Harvard Medical School Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging. She then founded the Higher Synthesis Foundation and Higher Synthesis Works (as well as Higher Synthesis Health), as vehicles to hold her present integrated systems approach and to empower community-based practices with tools, data-capture systems and resources appropriate to innovative, individualized, systems approaches to health and resiliency. To this end she is the Scientific Director and Principal Investigator of the Documenting Hope Project scientific programs CHIRP™ and FLIGHT™, DHP’s comprehensive health and resilience survey and prospective interventional film-documented study. She also advises several other innovative health, learning and environmental programs on ways to generate data under her “Gifted Clinicians, Transformative Treatments, Sensitive Measures” project..

Dr. Herbert is the author of the public-facing book Harvard Health Publications/Random House book The Autism Revolution: Whole Body Strategies for Making Life All it Can Be, whose strategies are applicable for all human beings.  She is also the author of many scientific and review papers, available on