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AISB event Bulletin Item

CALL FOR PARTICIPATION: Computational Neurodynamics Seminar, "Neural field models", Wed 23rd Nov 2011, Imperial College, LONDON

Title: Neural field models
Speaker: Etienne Roesch, School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading
Wednesday 23rd November - 16:00-17:30 - Room 343, Huxley Building, South Kensington campus, 
Imperial College, London, SW7 2A, UK.

Abstract: Most of computational neuroscience focuses on cell-level systems, like the physiological 
particulars that together give rise to a particular electro-chemical behaviour, or the dynamics at 
play in networks of cells. Very rarely do we see convincing attempts at modelling higher-level 
neural systems, and even more rarely do we see attempts at bridging the microscopic, mesoscopic 
and macroscopic levels typically used to describe the workings of the brain. In this talk, I will 
introduce neural field models, as a potential tool for bridging these levels of perspectives, and 
render explicit hypotheses that can be tested with EEG, fMRI and coupled EEG-fMRI. I will review a 
number of successes and discuss issues that may arise.

Etienne Roesch is currently a postdoc in the Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics 
(CINN), at the University of Reading. The EPSRC project he is working on aims at constructing 
forward and inverse models of coupled EEG-fMRI, using biologically plausible neural field models. 
Before starting in CINN, he was the recipient of a Fellowship for Prospective Researchers, awarded 
by Swiss National Science Foundation, which he used to join Prof. Murray Shanahan's Cognitive 
Robotics group at Imperial College London. During this time, he contributed to the development of 
NeMo, a modelling platform for spiking neurons using GPUs. Roesch completed his doctoral studies 
at the Swiss Centre for Affective Sciences, at the University of Geneva, under the supervision of 
Prof. Klaus Scherer and Prof. David Sander.

His research aimed at characterizing the unfolding of attentional resources to the processing of 
emotion-laden information. He employed a number of experimental paradigms, including the modulation
of the attentional blink, and tailored psychophysical paradigms to assess the minimum display 
duration necessary to make a correct gender decision on emotional faces. Before his doctoral 
studies, Roesch was an RA in Prof. Diego Pizzagalli's Affective Neuroscience Lab, at Harvard 
University. And before that, he completed studies in cognitive science (BSc, MSc), and computer 
science (BSc).