The problem of agency in cognitive systems research

The goal of this network action is to enable a 2-month collaboration between Dr. Tom Froese (an affiliate of the CCNR, University of Sussex, UK) and Prof. Shaun Gallagher, of the University of Central Florida and Hertfordshire. The general aim of the visit is to build on work that was funded by two network actions of the first euCognition, namely Froese's collaboration with Prof. Ziemke. That collaboration resulted in an important publication in the journal of AI; it made significant contributions toward a unified framework of intentional agency in order to diagnose some of the deep problems faced by our efforts in artificial cognitive system research.

Event dates: 1st Oct 2009 - 1st Dec 2009.

The focus of the proposed collaboration between Froese and Gallagher will be to complement this work by analyzing an area that was outside of that original project's scope, namely the cross-section of phenomenology, biology, and systems thinking. More specifically, the proposal aims to establish a mutually informative dialogue between artificial cognitive systems research and phenomenology, a philosophical tradition that has been concerned with developing a coherent understanding of agency, intentionality, meaning and cognition for over a century. In this way it will be possible to relate work in cognitive systems to an established philosophical framework and, in return, to provide that framework with a new methodological toolbox based on the synthesis of cognitive technology.

Date Posted: 1 October 2009