Jorge Almeida
Principal Investigator
Acrónimo | Acronym
Nome | Name
Mapping The Mind: Contentotopic mapping: the topographical organization of object knowledge in the brain
Sobre | About
Starting Grant (StG), SH4, ERC-2018-STG 2019-02-01- 2024-01-30 1,8 M€


Principal Investigator Jorge Almeida
Acronym ContentMAP

Mapping The Mind: Contentotopic mapping: the topographical organization of object knowledge in the brain

ERC Type Starting Grant (StG), SH4, ERC-2018-STG
Year 2019
Value 1,8 M€
Research unit CINEICC, UC


Our ability to recognize an object amongst many others is one of the most important features of the human mind. However, object recognition requires tremendous computational effort, as we need to solve a complex and recursive environment with ease and proficiency. This challenging feat is dependent on the implementation of an effective organization of knowledge in the brain. In ContentMAP I will put forth a novel understanding of how object knowledge is organized in the brain, by proposing that this knowledge is topographically laid out in the cortical surface according to object-related dimensions that code for different types of representational content – I will call this contentotopic mapping. To study this fine-grain topography, I will use a combination of fMRI, behavioral, and neuromodulation approaches. I will first obtain patterns of neural and cognitive similarity between objects, and from these extract object-related dimensions using a dimensionality reduction technique. I will then parametrically manipulate these dimensions with an innovative use of a visual field mapping technique, and test how functional selectivity changes across the cortical surface according to an object’s score on a target dimension. Moreover, I will test the tuning function of these contentotopic maps. Finally, to mirror the complexity of implementing a high-dimensional manifold onto a 2D cortical sheet, I will aggregate the topographies for the different dimensions into a composite map, and develop an encoding model to predict neural signatures for each object. To sum up, ContentMAP will have a dramatic impact in the cognitive sciences by describing how the stuff of concepts is represented in the brain, and providing a complete description of how fine-grain representations and functional selectivity within high-level complex processes are topographically implemented.
Inicio 2019-02-01
Fim 2024-01-30
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