Consciousness under the spotlight of science

August 30 - 31, 2018

Strasbourg (France)


Long regarded as unaffordable, the topic of Consciousness has been opened to empirical approaches over the last few decades. If defining consciousness still remains an unreachable dare for searchers, recent theories and hypotheses seek to outline this enigmatic phenomenon, which insistently challenges us in the deepest part of our humanity.

From minimal self to voluntary conscious mind that could typically concern humankind features, from theory of mind to artificial intelligence, from medicine to quantum physics, from neurosciences to introspective approaches that for millennia aimed at exploring its most accurate mechanisms, Consciousness, either of the self, of others or of the world, lies definitely at the heart of societal burning issues :

  • What would be the origin and the significance of Consciousness from both phylogenetic and ontogenetic point of view? Would it be an intrinsic property of the living matter or rather an emergent mechanism?
  • What does research on coma and various states of consciousness tell us about the connection between mind and brain? Can we postulate equivalence between mental and cerebral states? Is Consciousness a continual process? May consciousness reach higher levels than wakefulness? How do our unconscious and conscious systems cohabit with each other?
  • What are the latest technological and computer improvements in the field of artificial intelligence? Can we already develop autonomous systems able to build up a representation of themselves in their environment, thus addressing the relationship between artificial and human consciousness?
  • What are the significant contributions of quantum physics in the field of consciousness study?

The aim of this symposium is to bring together international experts drawn deliberately from a variety of different backgrounds but internationally recognized in the field of Consciousness study in order to review actual knowledge. By inviting this meeting of different points of view and fostering the sharing of experience, our goal is to stimulate the discussion and open up interesting research avenues. This symposium will also concern master and doctoral students (Neurosciences, Psychology, Ethology, Medicine, Computer science…) in order to enrich their training and support their opening towards interdisciplinary thinking.


Thursday August 30th, 2018

08:30 – 09:00 Registration & Welcome coffee
09:00 – 09:45 Opening by Catherine Florentz (Vice President of Research and Doctoral Training, University of Strasbourg) and Welcome Address

09:45 – 11:45 

Sid Kouider (Paris, France) “Neurocognitive markers of consciousness: from baby to artificial intelligence                             
Uriah Kriegel (Paris, France) “Finding the neural correlates of consciousness (NCC) versus Explaining the NCC                                      
James Anderson (Kyoto, Japan) “Self-consciousness in primates: why no suicide in chimpanzees?”                       

11:45 – 12:15 General Discussion

12:15 – 14:00 Lunch break - Posters - Exchange

14:00 – 16:00 

Marie-Elisabeth Faymonville (Liège, Belgium) “It’s all in your head: cognitive modulation of pain"  
Franz Vollenweider (Zürich, Swizerland) "Neurobiology of Psychedelics States and Clinical Implications"
Benjamin Rohaut (New-York, USA) "Recovery of consciousness after a brain injury"

16:00 – 16:30 Coffee break

16:30 – 17:15 

Corine Sombrun (Paris, France) & François Taulelle (KU Leuven, Belgium) “From shamanic to cognitive trance”        
17:15 – 18:00 General Discussion

19:00 – 20:30 Conférence grand public par Swamini Umananda (Paris, France) “La Conscience dans la pensée de l'Inde

Friday August 31st, 2018

09:00 – 09:30 Welcome Coffee

09:30 - 11:30 

Marc Henry (Strasbourg, France) "Is water at the root of cousciousness and why?
Philippe Guillemant (Marseille, France) “Could consciousness shape space-time
Amal El Fallah Seghrouchni (Paris, France) "What place does consciousness occupy in Artificial Intelligence?"

11:30 – 12:00 General Discussion

12:00 – 14:00 Lunch break - Posters - Exchange

14:00 – 16:00 

Catherine Tallon-Baudry (Paris, France) “Visceral inputs, brain dynamics and subjectivity
Jean-Michel Hupé (Toulouse, France) “Can the studies of synesthesia and bistable perception by cognitive neuroscience open a window into the enigmatic phenomenon of consciousness?

Rémy Capa (Toulouse, France) “Influence of unconscious motivation processes on our behaviours”                                                

16:00 – 16:30 Coffee break

16:30 - 18:00 General Discussion

19:00 – 20:30 Conférence grand public par Héléna Cassol (Liège, Belgium) “Cerveau et conscience: que nous dit la recherche et l'étude des expériences de mort imminente ?”                                      



Sarah Schimchowitsch, Odile Rohmer (EA  4440 LPC, Strasbourg, F) & Jean-Christophe Cassel (LNCA, Strasbourg, F)


August 30th-31st, 2018

Collège Doctoral européen

46, boulevard de la victoire

F-67000 Strasbourg



Neurex gets a partnership with the


(1 Avenue Herrenschmidt – 67000 STRASBOURG – France).

Please find HERE the preferred rate and the direct booking possibilities and THERE the description of the hotel.



Deadline for registration: August 23rd, 2018


Neurex workshops are part of the cycle B5 of the University of Basel. They allow students to gain Credit Points from attending workshops/meetings.

This specific workshop will give rise to the attribution of 1 CP.

Important: Full rules & how to proceed available here.