Causal Modelling in Cognitive Motor Control

Name of applicant

Mark Schram Christensen


Associate Professor


University of Copenhagen


DKK 4,895,222



Type of grant

Semper Ardens: Accelerate


We will test the hypothesis, that control of movements can be considered a special case of directing one’s attention to different hierarchical levels of goals that you would like to acheive. The type of control will be different depending on whether you focus on the overarching goal of travelling to another city as compared with focusing on the individual steps into the train, that will bring you to the city.


Models of cognitive functions in humans have largely ignored that acquisition of many simple and complex skills are restricted by the movements that are made possible by the human body. Therefore, we will incorporate knowledge about bodily limitations into hierarchical models of cognitive functions founded in different levels of goal representations.


We will formulate mathematical models of hierarchical cognitive functions that are founded in individual biomechanical limitation, and test whether these models perform better in predicting behavior in cognitive tasks compared with standard models, that does not consider individual biomechanics. Finally, we will confirm this by manipulating with the neural representations of the cognitive functions at different hierarchical levels using magnetic stimulation of the brain.

Back to listing page