Minimal modelling of embodied cognition

In front of the ‘brain as a computer’ perspective, the field of cognitive science progressively taking a turn towards understanding cognition as skillful activity that involves interaction loops with the external world. Under this umbrella, sensorimotor theory tries to characterize cognition and perception in terms of the mastery the “sensorimotor contingencies” (SMCs) that govern our interaction with the world. One of the challenges faced by sensorimotor theory faces is to specify at the level of neural mechanism what is meant by a SMC and by their mastery.

Using minimal modeling principles, we work in minimally cognitive setups implemented in computer simulations capturing brain-body-environment dynamics of human subjects and synthetic agents. Using the principles of Dynamical Systems theory, Information Theory and Complex Systems theory, our aim is to better understand the principles that govern the process of learning during sensorimotor interactions and how and what changes on the dynamics of neural networks.




Aguilera, M, Bedia, MG, Santos, BA, Barandiaran, XE (2013). The Situated HKB Model: how sensorimotor spatial coupling can alter oscillatory brain dynamics. Frontiers in Computational Neuroscience 7 (2013): 117. doi:10.3389/fncom.2013.00117.

Santos, BA, Barandiaran, XE, Husbands, P, Aguilera, M & Bedia, M G. (2012). Sensorimotor coordination and metastability in a situated HKB model. Connection Science.

Aguilera M, Bedia MG and Barandiaran XE (2016) Extended Neural Metastability in an Embodied Model of Sensorimotor Coupling. Frontiers in Systems Neuroscience 10:76. doi: 10.3389/fnsys.2016.00076

Aguilera M, Barandiaran XE, Bedia MG, Seron F (2015) Self-Organized Criticality, Plasticity and Sensorimotor Coupling. Explorations with a Neurorobotic Model in a Behavioural Preference Task. PLoS ONE 10(2): e0117465. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0117465

Aguilera, M, Bedia, MG, Barandiaran, XE. & Serón, F (2014). Intermittent animal behaviour: the adjustment deployment dilemma. Artificial Life, 20(4), 471–489. doi:10.1162/ARTL_a_00133

Aguilera, M, Bedia, MG, Barandiaran, XE & Serón, F (2011). The adjustment-deployment dilemma in organism’s behaviour: theoretical characterization and minimal model. Proceedings of the IEEE Symposium on Artificial Life, pp. 116-123.