Bernard J Baars
Bernard J. Baars (born 1946, Amsterdam) is a former Senior Fellow in Theoretical Neurobiology at The Neurosciences Institute in La Jolla, CA., directed by the late Gerald M. Edelman. Baars is currently an Affiliated Fellow.
He is best known as the originator of Global Workspace Theory (GWT), an empirical theory of human cognition and consciousness, developed with Stan Franklin as a computational architecture. A number of neuroscience groups in the US and Europe are pursuing this approach, including Stanislas Dehaene in Paris and Nikos Logothetis at the Max Planck Institute, Tuebingen. "Consciousness science" is now an established field, with a large brain and psychological literature.
In 2013, a major update called Dynamic Global Workspace Theory (D-GWT) appeared. (Baars, Franklin & Ramsoy, 2013, Frontiers). This work proceeds.
Baars served as a professor of psychology at the State University of New York, Stony Brook, where he studied laboratory-evoked human errors. The same factors plausibly cause spontaneous errors as well, a significant practical as well as scientific problem. Involuntary errors are directly relevant to the basic question of voluntary control.
Baars co-founded the Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness, and the Elsevier journal Consciousness & Cognition, with William P. Banks.
Please see my 2015 article on Consciousness in Scholarpedia, summarizing the empirical evidence.
(Which is often said not to exist... !).
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