My name is Sofiia Rappe, and I am a Neurophilosophy PhD student at the Graduate School of Systemic Neurosciences (GSN) and the Faculty of Philosophy at LMU Munich.
Areas of interest:
philosophy of mind, language & cognitive science(s), predictive processing, perception-cognition interaction, consciousness, conceptual thought, and artificial minds
I am working on:
My doctoral project investigates the possibility of extension of the predictive processing framework to higher-order cognitive processes such as conceptual thinking.
I have worked on:
Before joining CVBE, I wrote my MSc thesis on prediction and efficient language processing at the University of Edinburgh (see publications).
Previously, I have also worked at the Consciousness and Wisdom Studies Lab and Technologies for Aging Gracefuly Lab, both at the University of Toronto. In the former, I was involved in a project investigating the relationship between altered states of consciousness, transformative experiences, and well-being. In the latter, I was part of the team developing a social communication app for elderly people with mild cognitive impairments.
Predictive Processing and Thought
Our brains are prediction machines. In the recent years, this idea has been taken increasingly seriously by both cognitive scientists and philosophers of mind. One specific framework within the new stream of research, Predictive Processing (PP), has enjoyed especial popularity. PP has been used to account for a wide variety of perceptual and cognitive processes in multiple domains, including vision, body-awareness, language, emotion, and abnormal psychiatry. The wide applicability of PP makes it an attractive candidate for a unifying framework of human cognition. So far, however, the largest body of research in PP has focused on (visual) perception and its particular neural mechanisms. Our project tries to answer the question “Can PP be extended to higher-order cognitive processes?” and intends to address the relationship between PP, conscious thought, and its phenomenology.
At this stage we are:
- Exploring the “architectural commitments” of predictive processing and the assumptions associate with them;
- Examining what it means to do conscious reasoning;
- Arguing that some of the problems related to the extension of pp to thought stem from a misrepresentation of the PP machinery and the usage of a particular notion of thought.