Workshop | Ron Chrisley

05.12.2016 15:00 - 19:00

"Computation and Consciousness"

Ron Chrisley

Centre for Cognitive Science (COGS), University of Sussex, UK

"Computation and Consciousness"

Registration is required (due limited capacity) for the workshop until December 1, 2016.

About the workshop

This workshop will start by reviewing what consciousness is, and some of the difficulties facing attempts to provide a scientific explanation of consciousness. Next, the role of computation in providing such accounts will be considered: Why might one think computation is well- or ill-suited to explain phenomenal experience? These general issues will be brought into focus by considering the special case of qualia. What are they, and why might one think that they could never be given a physicalist or computational account? Drawing on recent work with Aaron Sloman, I will argue that despite conventional wisdom, there is a middle way between dualistic qualia realism and physicalistic qualia eliminativism, a way that is best explored by making use of computational notions.

Rough agenda:

  • Session 1: "The Consciousness Challenge"
  • Discussion
  • Session 2: "Computation: Promise and Problems"
  • Discussion
  • Session 3: "Wither Qualia?"
  • Discussion

About the speaker

Ron Chrisley is Reader in Philosophy in the School of Engineering and Informatics at the University of Sussex. He received a Bachelors of Science in Symbolic Systems, with honours and distinction, from Stanford University in 1987. He was an AI research assistant at Stanford, NASA, and Xerox PARC, and investigated neural networks for speech recognition as a Fulbright Scholar at the Helsinki University of Technology and at ATR Laboratories in Japan. In 1997 he received a DPhil in Philosophy from the University of Oxford, and in 1992 he took up a lectureship in Philosophy in the School of Cognitive and Computing Sciences at the University of Sussex. From 2001-2003 he was Leverhulme Research Fellow in Artificial Intelligence at the School of Computer Science at the University of Birmingham. Since 2003 he has been the director of the Centre for Cognitive Science (COGS) at the University of Sussex, where he is also on the faculty of the Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science.


Lecture Hall 2h (NIG)

Neues Institutsgebäude (NIG)
Universitätsstraße 7 (2nd floor, stairs 3)
A-1010 Wien