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Journal Article

How does hemispheric specialization contribute to human-defining cognition?


Hartwigsen,  Gesa
Lise Meitner Research Group Cognition and Plasticity, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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Hartwigsen, G., Bengio, Y., & Bzdok, D. (2021). How does hemispheric specialization contribute to human-defining cognition? Neuron, 109(13), 2075-2090. doi:10.1016/j.neuron.2021.04.024.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0008-69FC-7
Uniquely human cognitive faculties arise from flexible interplay between specific local neural modules, with hemispheric asymmetries in functional specialization. Here, we discuss how these computational design principles provide a scaffold that enables some of the most advanced cognitive operations, such as semantic understanding of world structure, logical reasoning, and communication via language. We draw parallels to dual-processing theories of cognition by placing a focus on Kahneman’s System 1 and System 2. We propose integration of these ideas with the global workspace theory to explain dynamic relay of information products between both systems. Deepening the current understanding of how neurocognitive asymmetry makes humans special can ignite the next wave of neuroscience-inspired artificial intelligence.