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Systems, Cognitive, and Computational Neuroscience

The human brain is a network of 10 11 neurons with 1015 connections, making it the most complex system in the universe. Systems/cognitive neuroscience is the study of how information processing in this vast neural network gives rise to perception, memory, abstract thought, complex behavior, and consciousness itself. This is the mind/body problem, debated by philosophers for millennia, now accessible to empirical inquiry, and one of the great remaining scientific frontiers. Johns Hopkins has an unusual concentration of systems/cognitive laboratories, with a focus on quantitative, network-level understanding of cognitive information processing. Experimental tools include neurophysiology, brain imaging, and psychophysics. Analytical approaches involve systems identification, dimensionality reduction, information theory, and network modeling. One major area of interest is how visual and tactile information processing leads to perception and understanding of two- and three-dimensional objects. Another focus is on neural processing and recognition of speech and other complex sounds. Other laboratories study neural mechanisms of attention, memory formation, motor learning, decision-making and executive control of behavior.

Ed Connor

Shape Processing in Higher Level Visual Cortex

Stewart Hendry

Functional Organization of the Primate Visual System

Alfredo Kirkwood

Mechanisms of Cortical Modification

James Knierim

Behavioral Neurophysiology of the Hippocampal Formation

Hey-Kyoung Lee

Cellular/molecular mechanisms of synaptic plasticity underlying memory formation

Ernst Niebur

Computational Neuroscience

Kristina Nielsen

Neural circuits underlying object recognition

Veit Stuphorn

Neurophysiological Mechanisms of Decision Making and Self-control

Rudiger von der Heydt

Neural Mechanisms of Visual Perception

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