What is the central executive network?
Responsible for tasks and decision making, the central executive network (CEN), also known as the frontoparietal network, acts as “the external mind.”
As one of the dominant control networks in the brain, the CEN performs high-level cognitive tasks, and works alongside or in anticorrelation with the other six main brain networks.
The CEN engages in:
- Active tasks and external thinking involving working memory1
- Controlled processing of information2
- Integration of information from the other brain networks3
- Rule-based problem solving and decision making4
- Consideration of multiple, independent stimuli and independent factors5,6
- Organizing behavior based on internal drives, subjective preferences, and choices7
- Reinforce visually learned behaviors
With the ability to designate actions as one of dominant control networks, the CEN plays a critical role in the brain.