Scientific events  

Edouard Machery: Inference, explanation, & prediction in the mind/brain sciences

12-15 June 2015
organized by Lena Kästner

Venue: Berlin School of Mind and Brain, Luisenstraße 56, 10117 Berlin


Scientists often try to explain mental or cognitive phenomena in terms of neural processes. But how does this work? Typically, we measure neural processes in the brain (directly or indirectly) and correlate this data with measures taken in the cognitive domain (e.g. performance on a memory task). We then infer something about how cognitive phenomena are implemented by neural processes. However, this is not a trivial matter. It takes careful consideration of our material and methods as well as the theoretical foundations on which our inferences are based. Besides, we must wonder how to best conceptualize what the brain is doing in way that illuminates how neural processes bring about cognitive phenomena. These will be the main topics of the "Kosmos-Dialogue with Edouard Machery: Inference, explanation, & prediction in the mind/brain sciences". Prof. Machery is an internationally renowned expert in the field; together with him we will explore contemporary attempts to bridge the gap from brain data to cognitive phenomena.


Friday, 12 June 2015

9:30 – 10:00 Registration

10:00 – 12:00
KOSMOS Lecture by Edouard Machery
“What's the point of significance testing in cognitive neuroscience?”

Venue: Room 144
12:00 – 14:00 Lunch
14:00 – 16:00 Journal Club on Reverse Inference
Venue: Room 220
Reading: Glymour, C., & Hanson, C. (2015). Reverse Inference in Neuropsychology. The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, axv019.
Background: Machery, E. (2014): In Defense of Reverse Inference. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, 65, 251-267.
16:00 – 16:30 Coffee Break
16:30 - 18:00 Meet the Speaker
Venue: Room 220

Saturday, 13 June 2015

Workshop on Inference, Explanation & Prediction in the Mind/Brain Sciences
Venue: Room 220
10:00 – 10:30         
Lena Kästner: Patterns, Perspectives, and Explanations
10:30 – 11:00          
Peter Brössel: On the Rationale of Reverse Inference in Neuroscience
11:00 – 11:30          
Luke Tudge: The Pleasure Room Problem: Maladaptive Consequences of Prediction Error Minimization
11:30 – 12:00 Coffee Break
12:00 – 12:30          
Beate Krickel: Characterizing Mechanisms: How to Cope With High Failure Mechanisms
12:30 – 13:00          
Robin Löhr: What are Concepts? The Role of “Concept” in Philosophical and Psychological Explanations
13:00 – 13:30          
Dimitri Coelho Mollo: Doing Without Representation?
13:30 – 14:00 Final Discussion

Monday, 15 June 2015

10:00 – 12:00 Journal Club on Cognitive Ontology
Venue: Room 220
Reading: Price, C. J., and Friston, K. (2005). Functional ontologies for cognition: The systematic definition of structure and function. Cognitive Neuropsychology, 22, 262-275.
Further Readings:
Poldrack, R. A., Halchenko, Y., and Hanson, S. J. (2009). Decoding the large-scale structure of brain function by classifying mental states across individuals. Psychological Science, 20, 1364-1372.
Lenartowicz, A., Kalar, D. J., Congdon, E., and Poldrack, R. A. (2010). Towards an ontology of cognitive control. Topics in Cognitive Science, 2, 678-692.
Klein, C. (2012). Cognitive Ontology and Region-versus Network-Oriented Analyses. Philosophy of Science, 79, 952-960.
12:00 – 14:00 Lunch
14:00 – 17:00 Time for individual meetings
18:00 – 20:00
Public Evening Lecture by Edouard Machery “Bayes or bust: is cognition really Bayesian?”

Venue: Festsaal



This page last updated on: 15 December 2015

The speaker

Contact & registration

Registration: Attendance is free but because of limited space we ask you to register if you would like to participate in any part(s) of this event.

To register, please send an e-mail to kosmosdialog-please remove this indicating which lectures and/or sessions you would like to join.

How to get there

Map with location of the Berlin School of Mind and Brain at Humboldt Graduate School, Luisenstraße 56, Haus 1.

Public transport: The closest stations are ‘Hauptbahnhof’ (national & local trains, TXL bus from airport Tegel, S-Bahn), ‘Oranienburger Tor’ (U-Bahn), and ‘Friedrichstraße’ (S-Bahn and U-Bahn). Bus No 147 stops at ‘Charité - Campus Mitte’ near our building.

To find out about public transport connections in Berlin, see BVG website.