Institut Jean Nicod

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CASATI Roberto - Directeur de l’Institut Jean-Nicod

Directeur de Recherche, CNRS

Directeur d’études, EHESS

 

CONTACT ǀ Tel : 01 44 32 26 95

PUBLICATIONS (HAL)

 

Equipe

PERCEPTION, MEMOIRE, REPRESENTATIONS

(Directeur du groupe DESORIENTATION)

 

 

Roberto Casati works on theoretical problems related to cognitive artifacts and external representations, publishing on maps, pictograms, drawings, perspectival models, queues, music notation, and educational (in particular digital) tools, in the framework of an extension and generalization of the "two modes” account of reasoning, that is meant to be an alternative to "extended mind" theories. The main aim is to investigate the cognitive mechanics underlying the use of artifacts (shifting, bridging, recycling, contracting...) in a unitary framework centered on the tradeoffs between representational advantages. Pointing out a third mode (instrument assisted cognition) and a fourth mode (instrument delegated cognition), he has mainly pursued the study of instrumental navigation without delegation (pre-GPS wayfinding). A number of training- and field- projects have been realized.

In the last decade, Roberto Casati has completed a large study of visual perception and the computational properties of shadow representations (mostly in collaboration with visual neuroscientist Patrick Cavanagh). Shadows are ubiquitous and rich informational ecological items, clearly targeted by the evolution of visual systems. The project has unearthed new informational properties of shadows and proposed a five-stage decomposition of shadow vision. The work draws from an extremely large and variate corpus of stimuli that include artworks - reframing some of the key issues of the cognitive study of art. On top of a number of peer-reviewed articles, the main publication is their 2019 book The visual World of Shadows (MIT Press).

 

His current research has two major, interrelated strands :

  1. Wayfinding and navigation, with a focus on maps, disorientation, disorientation remediation in many different types of environment ; he runs the Disorientation team at IJN.
  2. Representations of the ocean, around the understanding of cognitive biases and changes in representations/concepts/behaviors, with a specific focus on the environmental crisis.

A dedicated skipper, he has completed two Atlantic crossings as crew (in the ARC 2019, 2nd in class B, 11th overall out of 200 competitors).

 

TEACHING

  • Climate Change Changing Behaviors (with Jean-Pierre Nadal, CAMS)
  • The Philosophy of the Ocean

 

INTERNSHIPS

Subjects for theoretical, bibliographic or experimental internships will offered about the following themes : cognition of the sea, representations of the sea, navigation, ontology of water, disorientation remediation, situated cognition, disorientation in the wild, cognition through maps. Please contact me for more information.

 

BOOKS IN PROGRESS

  • The Cognitive Life of Maps (MIT Press, 2022, on the cognitive foundations of mapping)
  • Ocean : A Philosopher’s Journey (in press)
  • ed. The Sailing Mind (in preparation)

 

SELECTION OF RELEVANT FUNDED PROJECTS

  • MITI CNRS : OOSP (Observation des océans et science participative) - RC is part of the PlanktonPlanet initiative, which is developing tools for frugal plankton observation on lightly traveled offshore routes ; I am in charge of the implementation study with sailors in OOSP, and am writing the manual.
  • ANR Dis-Covid (Disorientation and the Covid-19 Crisis) : we analyze the factors of disorientation in a crisis, with projections on the environmental crisis.
  • ANR EEC Education à l’esprit critique (on education, with Elena Pasquinelli/La Main à la Pâte) — key article : https://doi.org/10.1111/mbe.12286

 

FIELDWORK

  • IRIS Création, cognition, société - "Cognition in the wind", fieldwork with the association Taqwim, realization of a docu-web (Dir. R. Soldini) on drawing at sea (2018).
  • EHESS research fund "Knowledge in the Wind" - offshore fieldwork, with the first complete time-lapse film of an Atlantic crossing (2019)
  • "Transat return" fieldwork (2016-2017), Atlantic crossing on a Challenge 67, study of ocean navigation.

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