Tuesday, April 15, 2014

[Comp-neuro] Computational Modeling of Cognition-Emotion Interactions - Quebec City - July 23, 2014

CFP: Workshop on
“Computational Modeling of Cognition-Emotion Interactions: 
Relevance to Mechanisms of Affective Disorders
and Psychotherapeutic Action”


To be held at the 36th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society

July 23, 2014

Quebec City, Quebec, Canada



Recent years have witnessed an increasing interest in developing computational models of emotion and emotion-cognition interaction, within the emerging area of computational affective science.  At the same time, emotion theorists and clinical psychologists have been recognizing the importance of moving beyond descriptive characterizations of affective disorders, and identifying the underlying mechanisms that mediate both psychopathology and psychotherapeutic action.

Computational models of cognition-emotion interactions have the potential to facilitate more accurate assessment and diagnosis of affective disorders, and to provide a basis for more efficient and targeted approaches to treatment, through an improved understanding of the mechanisms of therapeutic action.

In spite of the significant synergy that could result from a dialogue among researchers and practitioners in affective modeling, emotion research and clinical psychology, limited interaction exists among these communities. The goal of this workshop is to provide a forum for interdisciplinary dialog among the members of these research communities, and explore how computational models of emotion-cognition interaction can help elucidate the mechanisms mediating affective disorders, as well as the mechanisms of therapeutic action.

Workshop Format

To facilitate cross-disciplinary discussions and interaction, the workshop format will emphasize moderated panels, small working groups, and open discussion, in addition to the traditional paper sessions.  To this end, we encourage submissions of proposals for discussion topics, panels and small working groups.

Keynote address:  Keith Oatley, University of Toronto
The cognitive bases of emotions, emotional disorders and psychotherapy.”

Submission Guidelines

Interested participants should submit extended abstracts (1-3 pages), discussion and working group topics (1 page), or panel proposals (1-2 pages) to hudlicka@cs.umass.edu by June 1.  Relevant topics include:

·         Which processes mediating cognition-emotion interactions are sufficiently well understood to support computational modeling (e.g., affective biases on attention & perception; emotion regulation; cognitive appraisal)?

·         How can models of these processes contribute to an understanding of the mechanisms of therapeutic action, across different types of psychotherapies (e.g., cognitive, psychodynamic, emotion-focused)?

·         What are the relative benefits and drawbacks of the dominant theoretical perspectives on emotion with respect to computational models of emotion-cognition interaction and therapeutic action (e.g., discrete / categorical models, dimensional models (PAD), componential models)?

·         What are the best representational and reasoning approaches for modeling cognitive-affective schemas and their transformation during therapy?  Can we characterize the differences in these transformations across distinct therapeutic approaches (e.g., cognitive, metacognitive, emotion-focused, motivational interviewing, psychodynamic)?

·         What are the most appropriate computational methods for modeling the distinct modalities of affective processes (e.g., physiological / somatic, expressive /behavioral, cognitive)?

·         How can we model intermodal interactions across processes operating at different time scales?

·         What types of data are necessary to develop these models, and how can these be obtained?

·         For a given affective process and modality, what criteria determine the best level of model resolution (e.g., models of lower-level processes via connectionist methods vs. higher-level symbolic models)?

·         How can we validate computational models of cognition-emotion interactions and therapeutic action, and what are the limits of this validation (e.g., validation of detailed symbolic models hypothesizing specific internal mental constructs, such as goals or plans, may not be possible with current technologies).


Addressing these questions from a multi-disciplinary perspective will provide the context within which concrete gaps in both theoretical knowledge and methodologies can be identified, and research priorities established.   

Submitters will receive notification of acceptance/rejection by June 15.

For more information see:  https://people.cs.umass.edu/~hudlicka/cogsci2014-cog-em.html

Post-Workshop Publication

The workshop papers will be published as a separate report, and both the papers and the presentations will be made available on the workshop web site. The workshop organizers will also pursue the possibility of a special issue of a relevant journal (TBD) and/or an edited volume in the Affective Science Series published by Oxford University Press.

Program Committee

Eva Hudlicka, Chair, Psychometrix Associates & University of Massachusetts-Amherst

Michael Arbib, University of Southern California

Jorge Armony, McGill University

Luc Beaudoin, Simon Fraser University

Jean-Marc Fellous, University of Arizona

Ian Horswill, Northwestern University

Richard Lane, University of Arizona


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