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From Brain Science to Intelligent Machines

Cognition in action and action through cognition: What our motor behaviour and decisions can tell about each other

Date: Wednesday20/04/2016

Venue: MS105 (Boardroom)

Time: 11.00 am

Speaker:    Dr. Arkady Zgonnikov
Affiliation:  School of Psychology, NUI Galway

                 

Cognition in action and action through cognition: What our motor behaviour and decisions can tell about each other

By 

Dr. Arkady Zgonnikov

School of Psychology, NUI Galway

Abstract

This talk will touch on a few links between human decision making and motor behaviour. First, more and more research on decision making shifts from studying static decision outcomes to analysing comprehensive dynamics of decision process. Such research supports the hypothesis that our cognitive processes during decision making can ‘leak’ into motor execution of a decision. Growing amount of experimental data in this field requires new mathematical methods to analyse individual differences in decision dynamics. Second, motor processes traditionally considered as unconscious and automatic (such as balance control during quiet standing) can evoke surprisingly complicated control mechanisms, for instance, intermittent control. A simple motor task, inverted pendulum balancing, provides a number of insights into these mechanisms. In particular, it turns out that the models of switching feedback can benefit from recent research on human cognition; this can have profound implications for real-world problems, e.g. falling in elderly.

Short Bio

Arkady Zgonnikov received MSc in Applied Mathematics from Saint-Petersburg State University, Russia in 2009, and PhD in Computer Science and Engineering from University of Aizu, Japan, in 2014. His PhD research involved experimental and theoretical investigations of human intermittent control. Since 2015, he has worked as a postdoc researcher at School of Psychology in NUI Galway, where he develops mathematical approaches to analysing dynamics of decision making. His current research interests include mathematical modelling, decision making, motor control, and applications of machine learning to human behaviour.