La Pietra: Canonical Neural Computation
17-19 April 2009
Villa La Pietra
, Italy

In the quest to understand the brain's operation, there is great hope and increasing evidence that key circuits and mechanisms are modular, and are repeated across species, brain areas, and modalities, to apply similar computations to different problems.  What are these canonical neural computations, and what are the underlying circuits and mechanisms?

This workshop puts together some of the top researchers involved in the analysis of neural mechanisms and computations. The goal shared by these researchers is to bridge levels of analysis, species, brain areas or modalities. 

By bringing these researchers together we aim to define a roadmap for immediate further research. The agenda will be set in advance by a collaborative statement listing specific goals/aims for this program of research. This statement will be used as a platform for discussion and will be refined as the meeting progresses.

In addition to the researchers, the attendees include journal editors and program directors from funding bodies, who can provide guidance and support for this roadmap. Expected among these attendees are Drs. Hirsh Cohen (Swartz Foundation), Andrew Rossi (National Institute of Mental Health), Sarah Caddick (Gatsby Charitable Foundation), Charles Yokoyama (Neuron), Hannah Bayer (Nature Neuroscience), and Claudia Wiedemann (Nature Reviews Neuroscience). They will provide advice on how to design, implement, and communicate a transformative program of research involving multiple researchers aimed towards a common goal.

The workshop takes place in Florence at NYU's La Pietra Conference Center on 17-19 April  2009. Generous funding was provided by the Swartz Foundation. For reasons of space, attendance is by invitation only. 

Event home page:


David Heeger, NYU
Eero Simoncelli, HHMI and NYU

John Reynolds, Salk Institute

Matteo Carandini, UCL



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