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Seminaire LNC : Gethin Hughes

Gethin Hughes

Laboratoire Psychologie de la Perception, CNRS & Université Paris Descartes

Voluntary action selection and action-effect prediction ABSTRACT : Voluntary and stimulus-driven actions are often thought to be controlled by two different systems in the brain. In the first part of this talk I will present data from an experiment where we investigated the interaction between these two types of actions by measuring event-related brain potentials (ERPs). We found that activation of the voluntary action system can facilitate stimulus-driven responding, suggesting that central aspects of these two different action types overlap in the brain. Nonetheless, decisions leading to voluntary and stimulus-driven behaviour invariably come from different sources, with voluntary actions typically selected on the basis of their predicted effects in the environment. Such action-effect prediction has been previously implicated in the phenomena of sensory attenuation and intentional binding. The second part of this talk will focus on a series of ERP and behavioural experiments where we tested the precise mechanisms leading to these phenomena. The findings from these experiments suggest that while sensory attenuation results from predictive action mechanisms, intentional binding is caused by increased temporal control for action-triggered stimuli.