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Who are we? How do we take decisions? How do we process information, and how does this influence our behaviour? What is the demarcation line between normal and abnormal behaviour? Which brain processes are involved in addiction, phobias or compulsive behaviour? Are humans the only species who can enjoy music, reason rationally and act upon moral principles?

These are just a few examples of the types of questions that have been asked for centuries by scholars from various backgrounds. More than ever before, we can provide answers to these questions by using new techniques, but in particular through collaborations with scientists from different disciplines. This interdisciplinary approach is the key to unravelling the mysteries of the mind, and its relation with the brain.

The University of Amsterdam has a strong tradition in research on brain and cognitive processes and researchers from these different traditions are brought together in Amsterdam Brain and Cognition (ABC).

Five faculties (Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG), Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB), Faculty of Science (FNWI), Amsterdam Medical Center (AMC), Faculty of Humanities (FGW), are involved in Amsterdam Brain and Cognition, both in terms of management and in terms of research cooperation. 

Understanding Consciousness | Social & Behavioural Sciences | University of Amsterdam
Understanding Consciousness | Social & Behavioural Sciences | University of Amsterdam
Understanding Consciousness

Our brains are made up of billions of cells, ingeniously interconnected. From this matter, conscious experience arises of the world around us, as well feelings of joy, pain or fear. Without consciousness life wouldn’t matter to us. Scientist that are part of the ABC theme “Perception Attention and Consciousness” are continuously working on unraveling its mysteries.