"Testing Embodied Cognition: The Embodied Mind in a Cognitive Universal Body"

September 5, 2019
“Taberna” – Alte Mensa – Georg-August-Universität Göttingen

Taberna - Alte Mensa
Wilhelmsplatz 3
Göttingen 37073

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1st Workshop: "Testing Embodied Cognition: The Embodied Mind in a Cognitive Universal Body"

When and Where?: 5th September 2019 - “Taberna” – Alte Mensa – Georg-August-Universität Göttingen   

Confirmed Keynote: Prof. Giorgio Metta -iCub Project 

Contact Scientific Coordinator: Alfonsina Scarinzi, Dr. phil.

Deadline for proposal: 20th August 2019 

"Testing Embodied Cognition: The Embodied Mind in a Cognitive Universal Body. Results and Perspectives"

The embodied mind or embodied cognition thesis appeals to the idea that cognition deeply depends on aspects of the agent's body other than the brain. Embodied cognitive science aims to understand the full range of perceptual, cognitive, and motor capacities we possess, cognition in the broad sense, as capacities that are dependent upon features of the physical body. According to Varela et al. (1993), Di Paolo et al. (2010), Fuchs (2018), embodiment means that mind is inherent in the precarious, active, normative, and worldful process of animation. This means that the body is not a puppet controlled by the brain but a whole animate system with many autonomous layers of self-constitution, self-coordination, and self-organization and varying degrees of openness to the world that create its sense-making activity. 

 According to embodied cognition, a baby for example learns many cognitive skills by interacting with its environment and other humans, using its limbs and senses. Consequently its internal model of the world is largely determined by the form of the human body. The embodied approach to cognition was tested within the iCub project. The iCub is a humanoid robot that allows cognitive learning scenarios to be acted out by an accurate reproduction of the perceptual system and articulation of a small child so that it could interact with the world in the same way that such a child does. In other words, it is believed that human-like manipulation plays a vital role in the development of human cognition. 

Within this workshop, we would like to discuss the argument that the motor system influences our cognition, and the question of  how embodied cognition can be tested. The iCub project will be one of the topics. 

More precisely, we look for cross-disciplinary and multidisciplinary contributions (not only from philosophy and the cognitive sciences but from all disciplines) dealing with 

-          the sensorimotor approach to consciousness (sensorimotor contingency theory)

-          the mirror neuron system, representations and embodied simulation

-          the mirror neurons as neural resonance system and the brain 

-          HCI and the embodied approach to emotions

-          participatory sense-making and HCI

Contributions from all disciplines are welcome.

Please send your proposal (300 words) to the organizer and scientific coordinator: Alfonsina Scarinzi, Dr. phil 

[email protected] not later than 20th August.

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August 20, 2019, 1:00pm CET

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