Wellcome Lecture in Neuroethics 2013
Patrick Haggard (University College London), Glyn Humphries (Oxford University)

November 27, 2013, 5:00pm - 7:00pm
The Oxford Centre for Neuroethics, Oxford University

Lecture Theatre, Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford, Old Indian Institute
34 Broad Street
Oxford OX1 3BD
United Kingdom


  • International Neuroethics Society

Topic areas


The Oxford Centre for Neuroethics & International Neuroethics Society are pleased to present a set of two Wellcome Lectures in Neuroethics for 2013:

Brain mechanisms of voluntary action: the implications for responsibility

Prof. Patrick Haggard, University College London

Abstract:  to follow

Bio: Patrick Haggard is Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London.  He pursues two major research themes. The first is the cognitive neuroscience of voluntary action. Experiments in this theme attempt to link the subjective experience of intending and performing manual actions to the brain processes that occur before and after actual movement. The second research theme is the representation of one's own body. How does the brain create and maintain a represention of one's own body as a physical object? How is this representation influenced by current sensory inputs, such as touch and pain? How do such body representations contribute to a sense of self? These questions are addressed both in perceptual experiments, and in measures of brain activity elicited when subjects refer to a cognitive representation of the body.

The irresponsible self: Self bias changes the way we see the world

Prof. Glyn Humphreys, Department of Experimental Psychology, Oxford University

Abstract: Humans show a bias to favour information related to themselves over information related to other people. How does this effect arise? Are self biases a stable trait of the individual? Do these biases change fundamental perceptual processes? I will review recent work from my laboratory showing that self-biases modulate basic perceptual processes; they are stable for an individual and are difficult to control; they reflect rapid tuning of brain circuits to enhance the saliency of self-related items. I discuss the implications of this work for understanding whether perceptual processes are informationally encapsulated, and whether perception changes as a function of social context.

Bio: Glyn Humphreys is Watts Professor and Head of the Department of Experimental Psychology at Oxford, having formerly been Professor of Psychology at both Birkbeck College and the University of Birmingham. His research interests cover a wide range of topics in visual cognition and his work uses a variety of techniques including neuropsychological case studies, fMRI, EEG and trans-cranial magnetic stimulation. He has been awarded the British Psychological Society’s Spearman Medal, its President Award and its Cognitive Psychology Prize (twice). He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine, the American Psychological Association and the British Academy.

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