About: Interdisciplinarity  

What is meant by interdisciplinarity?

The human brain is one of the most complex objects of scientific research. Understanding the brain, its cognitive functions, and the related conscious experience requires cooperation of quite a number of different disciplines – from molecular neuroscience, neurobiology, cognitive neuroscience, neurology, and psychiatry to psychology, linguistics, and philosophy.

It is equally obvious that this cooperation does not only ask for excellent scholars in any of the relevant fields, it also requires that these experts have background knowledge over the gamut of mind and brain research and are trained in interdisciplinary cooperation.

It is the mission of the Berlin School of Mind and Brain ...

  • to train outstanding young scientists to become experts in one of the relevant fields,
  • to provide them with knowledge over the gamut of mind and brain research, and
  • to give them the ability, and the opportunity, to cooperate with researchers from other disciplines.

The focus of research proposals should be on the interface between the humanities and/or behavioral sciences with the neurosciences. Typical doctoral projects will investigate research questions that are of relevance to more than one discipline. The main research topics of the School pay tribute to that approach:

Perception, attention, consciousness
Brain plasticity and lifespan ontogeny
Brain disorders and mental dysfunction
Human sociality and the brain
Philosophy of mind

Advice from our faculty for successful project applications

Successful project proposals will draw on findings from the complementary side of mind and brain research. Results from the complementary field should play an essential role in achieving the objectives described in the research proposal such that “brain”-related research will also cover mental phenomena, and, conversely, “mind”-related projects incorporate findings from brain research. This requires sufficient grounding in the complementary field. Formal training or a degree in this field would be most welcome but is not mandatory.

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This page last updated on: 04 April 2016

“Roter Hund” © Painting by Laura Viefhues