PercAction - Linking perception to action
Certain mechanisms allow for a direct influence on human behavior by means of perceptual content.
To research this subject area, the Research Group combined methods of experimental psychology with those of the cognitive neurosciences.
The RG PercAction advanced the empirical work in two sub-areas:
The sex-aggression link
Earlier research has shown that there is a link between sexual perceptual content and aggressive behaviour in male study participants: The presentation of sexual perceptual content leads to an increased tendency of showing aggressive behaviour. The Research Group examined this link with the methods of the cognitive neurosciences. To that end, an experimental paradigm was developed in 2004. This paradigm was pre-tested several times and refined. The first EEG examinations were performed.
FMRI examination concerning the comparison network
Processes of comparison play a central role in human judgement and behaviour. They constitute a possble link between perception and behaviour. The Research Group analysed the role of comparison processes in phenomena of automatic behaviour. In a first step, it was determined whether comparisons of social content activate the same brain structures as comparisons of non-social content. An experimental paradigm for the examination of this possibility using the method of functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI) was developed and pre-tested. The first test surveys were performed at the Brain Imaging Center in Frankfurt.
A paper detailing the RG's research results was published in 2006:
Andreas Keil et al., Alpha-band activity reflects reduction of mental effort in a comparison task: A source space analysis, Brain Research 1121 (2006), 117-127 (PDF)
Junge Akademie Magazin
An article reporting on the RG was published in issue 3 of the Junge Akademie Magazin:
Isabell Lisberg-Haag, Vom Reiz zur Aktion. Gehirnareale und Verhaltenstendenzen, JAM 3 (2006), S. 10f. (PDF)