The Reward Foundation

Today, technology has produced extreme versions of the natural rewards of food, love and sex in the form of ultra-processed foods, social media and internet pornography. Tech companies directly target and overstimulate our brain’s reward centre, the nucleus accumbens, to keep us coming back for more. Easy access to the internet through mobile technology has increased the risks of harm from overstimulation. Our brains have not evolved to cope with such hyper-arousal. Since around 2010, society has been experiencing an explosion in behavioural disorders and addictions as a result.

We look at the impact of internet pornography on mental and physical health, relationships, attainment and criminality. We aim to make the supporting research accessible to non-scientists so that everyone can make informed choices about the use of internet pornography.

You might be interested in learning about the experience of those who have reported surprising benefits from quitting porn after years of heavy use. Our work is based on academic research and these real life case reports. We offer guidance on prevention of harm and building resilience to stress and addiction. We also signpost sources of help for those whose use has become uncontrollable.

TRF’s work

  • We monitor research in the relevant fields on a daily basis and make it accessible to a wide audience.
  • We provide evidence-based free lesson plans for schools on risks around sexting and internet pornography available in various formats for different countries
  • We have a free parents’ guide to internet pornography with useful resources
  • We do responses to government consultations in this area of work
  • We campaign for age verification legislation for pornography to help protect children
Charitable purposes

The Reward Foundation- Love, Sex and the Internet, is a registered Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation SC044948 founded on 23 June 2014. Our purposes are:

  • To advance education by furthering public understanding of the reward circuitry of the brain and how it interacts with the environment, and
  • To improve health by furthering public understanding of building resilience to stress.

Full details of The Reward Foundation are registered with the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator and are available on the OSCR website.  Our annual return, also known as our Annual Report, is also available from OSCR on that page.

Reward Foundation

Reward Foundation