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PhD thesis defense by Abhishek S. Prayagpour

Published on July 19, 2017

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Human and Robot Cognitive Systems


A fundamental aspect of human cognition is the adaptive capability it provides which allows the individual to interact in a novel and compositional manner with objects and other individuals in the surrounding space. These capabilities rely on perceptual processing, the integration of multimodal signals and the construction of multidimensional representations that can link high level processing from vision, action perception, speech and language, and cooperative interaction. Our previous research has addressed sensory-motor integration and higher cognition including spatial integration and language comprehension through a variety of methods including human functional imagery and clinical neuroscience, neural network simulation and robotics. This has lead us to an understanding of certain canonical principals of the cortico-striatal system in sequence learning and language, and an understanding of how distinct cortical processes for sensory-motor integration operate at different time-scales in the construction of a coherent representation of space, towards a general model of integrated perceptual processing. These studies have provided the basis for our implementation of robotic systems capable of vision and language based interaction with humans, including the ability to learn new cooperative behaviours in real time. One of the crucial issues that has emerged in this research is the realization that the nature of internal representations will be determined by the physiological structure of the system and its direct link with the nervous system, thus bringing us towards the “embodied cognition” stance. In this context we will develop a “hybrid” embodied cognitive system for a humanoid robot, the “iCub”.

Peter Ford Dominey

Peter Ford Dominey is a Research Director with the CNRS in Lyon France. He completed the BA at Cornell University in 1984 in cognitive psychology and artificial intelligence. In 1989 and 1993 respectively he obtained the M.Sc. and Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Southern California, developing neural network models of sensorimotor sequence learning, including the first simulations of the role of dopamine in sensorimotor associative learning. From ...

Nicolas Cazin PhD student

After being software engineer in defence industry for seven years, he obtained a second masters degree in computer science. His masters thesis was a study on continuous time chaotic recurrent neural networks and sensori-motor sequences learning.

The PhD subject is about resevoir computing too. It aims to explore the effects of replaying stimuli sequences fragments on the learning process occuring in the hippocampus-prefrontal cortex ...

Clément Delgrange

Carol Madden-Lombardi

My program of research brings together principles from the strong tradition of cognitive linguistics, the emerging framework of embodied cognition, and pioneering work in humanoid robotics to better understand how we comprehend described events. Our team employs a methodical approach in which (1) the behavior in question is first characterized, (2) the mechanisms that implement that behavior are identified, and (3) this knowledge is used to create an artificial system (derived ...

Anne-Laure Mealier

 Anne-Laure Mealier is a PhD student working on the What You Say Is What You Did (WYSIWYD) EU project.  She is specializeing in the develoment of language interaction models that allow the robot to make distinctions about the causes and effects of actions, and in the develpment of the organization of autobiographcial memory into a narrative "self".

Grégoire Pointeau

Grégoire Pointeau received the M.Sc. degree in biosciences (bio-informatics and modeling specialty) from the National Institute of Applied Sciences (INSA) of Lyon, France, in 2011, and then pursued Mater’s studies in Cognitive Science at the University of Lyon. He is currently a Ph.D. student at the Robot Cognition Laboratory in Lyon as part of the FP7 EFAA project.


He is interested in the accumulation of experience and autobiographical memory in the elaboration ...

Jocelyne Ventre-Dominey


Jocelyne Ventre-Dominey is Senior Researcher at INSERM-U846 in Lyon, France. She received her PhD at University Claude Bernard in Lyon in 1982 studying the implication of cortex in visual vestibular functions in the cat and macaque. During her thesis, she described for the first time the role of the posterior cerebral cortex in vestibular function and its anatomical correlates as direct projections from cortex to the vestibular nuclei. During her 2 years ...

Selected Publications of Team members :
Enel P, Procyk E, Quilodran R, Dominey PF. (2016) Reservoir Computing Properties of Neural Dynamics in Prefrontal Cortex. PLoS Comput Biol. 2016 Jun 10;12(6):e1004967. doi: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1004967. eCollection 2016.
Hinaut, X., Lance, F., Droin, C., Petit, M., Pointeau, G., & Dominey, P. F. (2015) Corticostriatal response selection in sentence production: Insights from neural network simulation with reservoir computing Brain and language, 150, 54-68
Khamassi M, Quilodran R, Enel P, Dominey PF, Procyk E (2015) Behavioral Regulation and the Modulation of Information Coding in the Lateral Prefrontal and Cingulate Cortex Cereb Cortex. 2015 Sep;25(9):3197-218 download
Jouen AL, Ellmore TM, Madden CJ, Pallier C, Dominey PF, Ventre-Dominey J (2015) Beyond the word and image: characteristics of a common meaning system for language and vision revealed by functional and structural imaging Neuroimage. 2015 Feb 1;106:72-85
Gibert, G., Olsen, K., Leung, Y. and Stevens, C (2015) Transforming an embodied conversational agent into an efficient talking head: from keyframe-based animation to multimodal concatenation synthesis Comput Cogn Sci, 1, 1 (2015/09/08 2015), 1-12 download
Carol Madden-Lombardi, Anne-Lise Jouen, Peter Ford Dominey, Jocelyne Ventre-Dominey (2015) Sequential Coherence in Sentence Pairs Enhances Imagery during Comprehension: An Individual Differences Study PlosOne, 10(9):e013869
Dominey PF, Inui T, Hoen M (2009) Neural network processing of natural language: II. Towards a unified model of cortico-striatal function in learning sentence comprehension and non-linguistic sequencing. Brain and Language 109:80-92 download
Ventre-Dominey J, Vallee B. (2007) Vestibular integration in human cerebral cortex contributes to spatial remapping. Neuropsychologia 45(2):435-9. download
Dominey PF, Mallet A, Yoshida E (2007) Progress in Programming the HRP-2 Humanoid Using spoken Language Proceedings of IEEE/RAS Int. Conf. Robotics & Auton. Systems download
Hoen M, Deprez V, Dominey PF (2007) Do you agree? Electrophysiological characterization of online agreement checking during the comprehension of correct French passive sentences. Journal of Neurolinguistics, 20, 395-421 download
Hoen M, Pachot-Clouard M, Segebarth C, Dominey PF (2006) When Broca experiences the Janus syndrome: an ER-fMRI study comparing sentence comprehension and cognitive sequence processing. Cortex 42:605-23. download
Ventre-Dominey J, Bailly A, Lavenne F, Lebars D, Mollion H, Costes N, Dominey PF. (2005) Double dissociation in neural correlates of visual working memory: a PET study. Cogn Brain Res 25(3):747-59 download
Dominey PF, Boucher JD (2005) Learning to talk about events from narrated video in the construction grammar framework Artificial Intelligence 167 (2005) 31–61 download
Zwaan RA, Madden CJ. (2004) Updating situation models. J Exp Psychol Learn Mem Cogn 30(1):283-8; discussion 289-91. download
Madden CJ, Zwaan RA. (2003) How does verb aspect constrain event representations? Mem Cognit 31(5):663-72 download
Dominey PF, Hoen M, Blanc JM, Lelekov-Boissard T (2003) Neurological basis of language and sequential cognition: Evidence from Simulation, Aphasia and ERP Studies Brain and Language 86(2):207-25 download
Hoen M, Golembiowski M, Guyot E, Deprez V, Caplan D, Dominey PF (2003) Non-linguistic cognitive sequence training improves syntactic comprehension in agrammatic aphasics Neuroreport, 14, 495-9 download
Ventre-Dominey J, Dominey PF, Broussolle E. (2002) Dissociable processing of temporal structure in repetitive eye-hand movements in Parkinson’s disease. Neurospychologia 40(8):1407-18 download
Neimer J, Eskiizmirliler S, Ventre-Dominey J, Darlot C, Luyat M, Gresty MA, Ohlmann T. (2001) Trains with a view to sickness. Curr Biol 11(14):R549-50. download
Dominey PF, Ramus F (2000) Neural network processing of natural language: I. Sensitivity to serial, temporal and abstract structure of language in the infant. Lang Cogn Processes, 15(1):87-127 download
Procyk E, Dominey PF, Amiez C, Joseph J-P (2000) The effects of sequence structure and reward schedule on serial reaction time learning in the monkey Cogn Brain Res 9(3):239-48 download