Ecoles thématiques CNRS / CNRS Summer Schools

Enaction et sciences cognitives / Enaction and Cognitive Science

Ecole 2007 : du 7 au 17 septembre 2007 - Fréjus (France)


Marek Mac Gann

Status University teacher               
University / Laboratory

Mary Immaculate College, University of Limerick

Laboratory website  
Personnal website

Special information(s)  

Research theme

Keywords: motivation, goals, psychology, ecological psychology, timescales

My research examines the concepts of goals and motivation within the enactive approach. In particular, I am interested in how different conceptions of goal-directedness are implicit in enactive theory, and how these might be systematised in order to apply the enactive approach in a structured and coherent manner to so-called higher cognitive functions. On of the key steps to this end that I am currently engaged in is a reconciliation of Merlin Donald's evolutionary and cultural approach to understanding cognition with the enactive approach as argued for in the works of Francisco Varela, Evan Thompson, Ezequiel diPaolo and others.

I am also interested in the kinds of empirical research methods that might be applied to these more "personal" levels of cognitive functioning, including the ecological methods used by the likes of James Gibson and Roger Barker.

Video and experimental material