RTG 2386  
Doctoral candidates  

Doctoral candidates and fast-track students

Name
Supervisors
Doctoral project
Prof. Dr. Isabel Dziobek
Prof. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter 
Reading mental states of others versus self – the case of autism  
Doctoral projectReading mental states of others versus self – the case of autism
DescriptionI aim to investigate if reading others’ and own mental states is a common process in neurotypically developed individuals and in individuals with autism spectrum disorder. Research suggests that there are shared neural activations and mental processes for mentalizing about others and the self in neurotypicals. Regarding the case of autism, it is known that inferring others’ mental states is altered, and first evidence shows that access to own mental states might be hampered, too. The study of autism may thus shed further light on the question if mindreading in self and others is one common process or two distinct processes.
FundingRTG doctoral position
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Isabel Dziobek
Prof. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter
RTG topicsTopic 5: Brain disorders and mental dysfunction
Topic 6: Extrospective assessment of emotion in self and other and their neural correlates
Topic 10:  Levels of extrospection in psychiatry
Degrees obtained
InstituteDepartment of Psychology, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Cohort2018
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-mailkatharina.boegl-please remove this text-@hu-berlin.de
Prof. Dr. Sascha Benjamin Fink
N.N. 
Introspective failures: questioning the first-person privilege in psychiatry 
Doctoral projectIntrospective failures: questioning the first-person privilege in psychiatry
DescriptionCould mental disorders such as Anton Babinski Syndrome, Blindsight or Alexithymia be explained in terms of introspective delusions? If so, I want to work out models of how introspection could be faulty, based on the current philosophical theories of introspection and on empirical data on these case studies.
FundingRTG doctoral position
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Sascha Benjamin Fink
N.N.
RTG topicsTopic 1: Epistemology of extrospection
Topic 4: Introspection, extrospection and denial of privileged access in psychiatry
Topic 10:  Levels of extrospection in psychiatry
Degrees obtained
InstituteInstitute of Philosophy, Otto-von-Guericke-Universität Magdeburg
Cohort2019
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-mailcaporusciochiara1-please remove this text-@gmail.com
 
Fast-track student 2018/19 
Doctoral projectFast-track student 2018/19
Cohort2018
StatusFast-Track student 2018/19
Dr. Laura Kaltwasser
Prof. Dr. John-Dylan Haynes 
Extrospective assessment of emotion in self and other and their neural correlates 
Doctoral projectExtrospective assessment of emotion in self and other and their neural correlates
DescriptionThe “Extrospective assessment of emotion” project investigates the neural correlates of inferring emotions in others. Socioaffective cues are manipulated to simulate self-reference and emotional labeling of congruent versus incongruent affective facial expressions and body cues during simultaneous EEG-fMRI. Emotion prediction and discernment should be represented as a series of spatiotemporal neural processes dependent on self-reference and coherence of affective cues.
FundingSalaried research position, RTG 2386 "Extrospection"
SupervisorsDr. Laura Kaltwasser
Prof. Dr. John-Dylan Haynes
RTG topicsTopic 6: Extrospective assessment of emotion in self and other and their neural correlates
Degrees obtained
InstituteHumboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Berlin School of Mind and Brain
Cohort2020
StatusDoctoral candidate
Elisa Filevich, PhD 
Introspective Reports in Confidence Paradigms: Examining the Role of Priors 
Doctoral projectIntrospective Reports in Confidence Paradigms: Examining the Role of Priors
FundingSalaried research position, RTG 2386 "Extrospection"
SupervisorsElisa Filevich, PhD
RTG topicsTopic 7: Extrospection and confidence judgements in metacognitive tasks
InstituteBernstein Center for Computational Neuroscience, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Cohort2020
StatusDoctoral candidate
Prof. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter
Prof. Dr. Peter N.C. Mohr 
Insight from outside? Comparing extrospective and introspective measures in anhedonia 
Doctoral projectInsight from outside? Comparing extrospective and introspective measures in anhedonia
DescriptionSeeking out rewards and experiencing pleasure are central to natural human function. However, these processes are disrupted in anhedonia, i.e. the loss of interest or pleasure in activities usually enjoyed. Even though anhedonia is a core symptom of major psychiatric conditions such as major depressive disorder and schizophrenia, its exact neural mechanisms remain poorly understood. On a similar vein, often only weak empirical correlations are found between the subjective experience of anhedonia and corresponding brain activation. We aim to bridge this gap by systematically applying extrospective (fMRI, behavioral assessment) and introspective methods (ecological momentary assessment) to the subcomponents of anhedonia – i.e. wanting, liking, effort, and learning – in healthy participants.
FundingRTG doctoral position
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter
Prof. Dr. Peter N.C. Mohr
RTG topicsTopic 1: Epistemology of extrospection
Topic 4: Introspection, extrospection and denial of privileged access in psychiatry
Topic 10:  Levels of extrospection in psychiatry
Degrees obtained
InstituteDepartment of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin
Cohort2018
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-mailanna.daniels-please remove this text-@charite.de
Researchgatehttps://www.researchgate.net/profile/Anna_Daniels3
Prof. Dr. Isabel Dziobek
Prof. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter 
Mind Reading and Body Reading; the relationship between interoception, bodily self and everyday extrospection 
Doctoral projectMind Reading and Body Reading; the relationship between interoception, bodily self and everyday extrospection
DescriptionOptimal social interaction requires a stable self-other boundary whereby emotions and mental states are quickly and accurately attributed to oneself or others. It has been proposed that one’s sense of bodily self is the result of the multisensory integration of information from outside (exteroception) and inside the body (interoception). My project focuses on the latter component of bodily self and how changes/impairments in interoception can potentially explain changes in everyday extrospection via their role in self-other distinction.
FundingSalaried research position, RTG 2386 "Extrospection"
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Isabel Dziobek
Prof. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter
RTG topicsTopic 3: Structural models of phenomenality
Topic 5: Reading mental states of others versus self - the case of autism
Topic 10:  Levels of extrospection in psychiatry
Degrees obtained
InstituteHumboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Department of Psychology
Cohort2020
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-mailmahlet.kassa-please remove this text-@hu-berlin.de
Researchgatehttps://www.researchgate.net/profile/Mahlet_Kassa
Prof. Dr. Sascha Benjamin Fink
Prof. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter 
Extrospection in psychiatric reasoning  
Doctoral project Extrospection in psychiatric reasoning
DescriptionIn my project, I argue that the current praxis of clinical psychiatric reasoning is a kind of model-based reasoning, enabling mental health professionals to extrospect patients' mental states.
FundingRTG doctoral position
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Sascha Benjamin Fink
Prof. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter
RTG topicsTopic 1: Epistemology of extrospection
Topic 4: Introspection, extrospection and denial of privileged access in psychiatry
Topic 10:  Levels of extrospection in psychiatry
Degrees obtained
InstituteInstitute of Philosophy, Otto-von-Guericke-Universität Magdeburg
Cohort2019
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-mailadrian.kind-please remove this text-@mailbox.org
 
Fast-track student 2019/20 
Doctoral projectFast-track student 2019/20
Cohort2019
StatusFast-track student 2019/20
Prof. Dr. Holger Lyre
Prof. Dr. John-Dylan Haynes 
Structural Models of Phenomenality 
Doctoral projectStructural Models of Phenomenality
DescriptionThe core of my project is the thesis that phenomenal spaces are structurally similar to neural spaces. A phenomenal space is a geometric description of similarity relations between experiential contents. Analogously, a neural space can be constructed from the similarity relations between neural patterns. Phenomenal and neuronal states can be individuated by their coordinates in their respective spaces. This allows a mapping between phenomenal and neuronal states. Such a linkage of phenomenal and neuronal spaces is part of a fruitful research program in contemporary neuroscience, namely the representational geometry approach. Based on this methodology, structural descriptions have found their way into major theories of consciousness. I examine the benefits and limitations of structuralism in consciousness science and relate structuralism to major topics in philosophy of mind.
FundingRTG doctoral position
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Holger Lyre
Prof. Dr. John-Dylan Haynes
RTG topicsTopic 1: Epistemology of extrospection
Topic 3: Structural models of phenomenality
Topic 8: Brain Reading and extrospection
Degrees obtained
InstitutePhilosophy Department, Otto-von-Guericke Universität Magdeburg
Cohort2019
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-maillukas.kob-please remove this text-@ovgu.de
Prof. Dr. Dominik Perler
N.N. 
Descartes and Leibniz on Other Minds 
Doctoral projectDescartes and Leibniz on Other Minds
DescriptionOur intuitions about intro- and extrospection – external access to higher cognitive processes – are strongly shaped by concepts formed in the early modern period. In particular, the introspective privilege is commonly attributed to Descartes (1596-1650), while some of his contemporaries, specifically Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716), offer views on knowledge and consciousness that rely less on inner observation. This project focuses on a specific form of extrospection which, in philosophy, has traditionally been known as the problem of other minds and provides a conceptual basis for an understanding of the psychological concept of empathy. It will compare the views of Leibniz and Descartes on this problem and analyze the interplay between intro- and extrospection.
FundingRTG doctoral position
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Dominik Perler
N.N.
RTG topicsTopic 1: Epistemology of extrospection
Topic 2: Extrospection and consciousness in early modern philosoph
Degrees obtained
InstituteInstitute of Philosophy, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Cohort2019
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-maillena.maria.kreymann-please remove this text-@hu-berlin.de
 
Fast-track student 2019/20 
Doctoral projectFast-track student 2019/20
FundingRTG fast-track scholarship
Cohort2019
StatusFast-track student 2019/20
Prof. Dr. Arno Villringer
Prof. Dr. Carsten Finke
Dr. Vadim Nikulin 
Discrepancies between different contents of introspection Somatosensory Perception in Patients after Stroke 
Doctoral projectDiscrepancies between different contents of introspection Somatosensory Perception in Patients after Stroke
DescriptionThe project investigates what are the neural underpinnings of apparent discrepancies of introspection in the somatosensory domain. An experiment is designed that combines psychophysics, EEG as well as voxel-based symptom lesion mapping to relate lesion sites to introspective discrepancies as well as to identify EEG markers of different types of (successful) introspection.
FundingSalaried research position, RTG 2386 "Extrospection"
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Arno Villringer
Prof. Dr. Carsten Finke
Dr. Vadim Nikulin
RTG topicsTopic 9: Numbtouch: Extrospection and introspection during weak somatosensory stimulation
Degrees obtained
InstituteCharité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin
Cohort2020
StatusDoctoral candidate
Prof. Dr. Holger Lyre
Prof. Dr. John-Dylan Haynes 
Underdetermination in Consciousness Science 
Doctoral projectUnderdetermination in Consciousness Science
DescriptionThe aim of my project is to develop means that ensure progress in consciousness research. Namely, in the form of criteria that must be met by any proper model or theoretical approach to consciousness. The motivation behind this is the ever increasing number of theories in the field despite the lack of an agreed upon foundation that constrains these efforts. Metaphorically speaking, we have a whole bag of keys - the theories and models - without yet knowing the keyhole — the explanandum. By developing criteria that specify the phenomena under observation in consciousness research I provide precisely that, a keyhole to consciousness. This ensures progress in consciousness research by enabling the theory-selection process characteristic for mature sciences.
FundingSalaried research position, RTG 2386 "Extrospection"
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Holger Lyre
Prof. Dr. John-Dylan Haynes
RTG topicsTopic 1: Epistemology of extrospection
Topic 3: Structural models of phenomenality
Topic 8: Brain Reading and extrospection
Degrees obtained
InstituteOtto-von-Guericke-Universität Magdeburg, Institute of Philosophy
Cohort2020
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-mailmarlo.passler-please remove this text-@hu-berlin.de
Prof. Dr. John-Dylan Haynes
Prof. Dr. Michael Pauen 
Brain reading and extrospection 
Doctoral projectBrain reading and extrospection
DescriptionIntrospection, the first-person perspective on one’s own mind, has long been regarded as the best way to derive conclusions about mental states. Along these lines, individual subjective ratings are considered to be the best indicators of subjective experiences. However, this may not be the case: it might be possible to use extrospective approaches to detect a person’s mental state more precisely than they can do themselves. I use a combination of fMRI and machine learning techniques to investigate whether inter-subjective, more objective (or ‘extrospective’) measures may be better at inferring a person’s mental state than their own introspective access. If successful, this would support extrospection as a viable method for inferring mental states, as well as highlight the importance of brain reading as a tool which allows external access to higher cognitive processes and can therefore be used to gather empirical evidence and derive objective explanations about subjective experience in the human brain.
FundingRTG doctoral position
SupervisorsProf. Dr. John-Dylan Haynes
Prof. Dr. Michael Pauen
RTG topicsTopic 1: Epistemology of extrospection
Topic 6: Extrospective assessment of emotion in self and other and their neural correlates
Topic 8: Brain Reading and extrospection
Degrees obtained
InstituteBernstein Center for Computational Neuroscience, Berlin; Charité - Universitätsmedizin, Berlin
Cohort2018
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-mailsweber-please remove this text-@bccn-berlin.de
Researchgatehttps://www.researchgate.net/profile/Simon_Weber14
Prof. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter
Prof. Dr. Sascha Benjamin Fink
 
Affective neuroscience in psychiatry: The case of anhedonia 
Doctoral projectAffective neuroscience in psychiatry: The case of anhedonia
DescriptionThis study will investigate the trait anhedonia in healthy subjects using various intro- and extrospective measures. Our aim is to find reliable correlations between self-report, behavioural results and fMRI data for the four components of anhedonia: anticipation, consummation, effort, and learning. We will then validate our experimental findings in everyday life through ecological momentary assessment via smartphone. Finally, we will discuss possible philosophical implications of the empirical study.
FundingRTG doctoral position
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Dr. Henrik Walter
Prof. Dr. Sascha Benjamin Fink
RTG topicsTopic 1: Epistemology of extrospection
Topic 4: Introspection, extrospection and denial of privileged access in psychiatry
Topic 10:  Levels of extrospection in psychiatry
Degrees obtained
InstituteResearch Division of Mind and Brain, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin
Cohort2018
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-mailsarah.wellan-please remove this text-@charite.de
Prof. Dr. Michael Pauen
Prof. Dr. Sascha Benjamin Fink
 
Epistemology of extrospection 
Doctoral projectEpistemology of extrospection
DescriptionIn my PhD studies, I investigate the epistemic merits and limitations of external access (2nd and 3rd person) to conscious and higher cognitive processes. The underlying working hypothesis is that there is in principle an interesting symmetry between first-person and external access to conscious mental states. This raises questions such as: What are the psychological mechanisms underlying first-person access? What is the relationship between these mechanisms and natural or context-related mental limitations, such as attentional selection and distribution, or an inability to categorize? Are these limitations of first-person access epistemically equivalent to the indirectness that may be associated with external access? Are there any conscious states that can only be detected by extrospection? Is the indirectness of external access an issue related to access, or is it rather due to the challenge of categorising and modelling information? Do metacognitive approaches serve as good candidates for calibrating methods to deal with mutually exclusive data from first-person and third-person access, e.g. in the case of aphantasia and inner speech?
FundingRTG doctoral position
SupervisorsProf. Dr. Michael Pauen
Prof. Dr. Sascha Benjamin Fink
RTG topicsTopic 1: Epistemology of extrospection
Topic 7: Extrospection and confidence judgements in metacognitive tasks
Degrees obtained
InstituteInstitute of philosophy, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Cohort2018
StatusDoctoral candidate
E-mailali.yasar-please remove this text-@hu-berlin.de
Homepagewww.aliyasar.de
Researchgatehttps://www.researchgate.net/profile/https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Ali_Yasar2
Academia.eduhttps://hu-berlin.academia.edu/AliYasar