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Speaker(s): Baroness Greenfield
Chair: Dr Frederic Basso

Recorded on 3 November 2016 at Old Theatre, Old Building

Consciousness is the ultimate miracle - and enigma. However most people take this subjective inner state for granted without ever reflecting on what could possibly be happening in their brain each day of their waking lives. This non-specialist talk will investigate this deeply fascinating question from the perspective of neuroscience, by exploring how objective events in the brain are realised as subjective experience. We follow a day in the life of a generic person (‘you’) as you wake up, walk the dog, have breakfast, work and return to a family with a variety of mental conditions. By the time we see ‘you’ ending your day in dreams, we will still not have solved how the water of objective brain mechanisms transform into the wine of subjective experience: but along the way we will have gained insights into cutting edge neuroscience, as well as contemplating the future of such research, for eventually really understanding consciousness.

Susan Greenfield is a research scientist, author and broadcaster based in Oxford. She has held research fellowships in the Department of Physiology Oxford, the College de France Paris, and NYU Medical Center New York. She has since been awarded 32 Honorary Degrees from British and foreign universities and heads a multi-disciplinary research group exploring novel brain mechanisms linked to neurodegenerative diseases such Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. She is a Senior Research Fellow at Lincoln College, Oxford and has currently co-founded a biotech company developing a novel approach to neurodegenerative disorders (Neuro-Bio Ltd). Her latest book is A Day in the Life of the Brain.

Frédéric Basso is Assistant Professor in Economic Psychology at the Department of Psychological and Behavioural Science of LSE, was a fellow of the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Cachan (France) in Law, Economics and Management and took the Agrégation in Economics and Management. His work is rooted in the grounded cognition theoretical framework and how laboratory paradigms can transfer to real-world phenomena in order to design evidence-informed policy thanks to field research.

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