Beliefs, Institutions, and Social Change

Nov 30, 2000Dec 02, 2000

This seminar was the second in a series of three which, together, were intended to bridge the gap between the recent findings of modern cognitive science and the social sciences. The first workshop, Cognition, Learning and Social Change, was focussed mainly on learning processes. Among the many topics that were discussed was the role of binding in internal brain processes (Damasio), the role of external representation in cognition (Zhang), and how beliefs emerge. Merlin Donald's theory of the origin of the human mind and Leda Cosmides’ work on evolutionary psychology acquired a prominent place in the discussion. One main outcome of the dialogue was a better understanding of the interaction between genetic and cultural evolution. This second workshop built on these discoveries in the sense that the participants came to to the discussion with a deeper understanding concerning the relationship between brain, mind and cognition.