Institut Jean Nicod

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Jean-Nicod Lectures and Prize


The human mind, its organisation, its nature, its relationship with the body and with the world have always been among the central themes of philosophy. Contemporary psychology itself originated in philosophy. It has become emancipated, but the emergence of the cognitive sciences in a way consecrates the return of philosophy in this field of research. The developments of computer science and neuroscience, by shedding new light on mental phenomena, have had the effect of reviving the philosophical debate. The ’philosophy of mind’ is thus flourishing more than ever. This return is not a regression, because the philosophy in question is in step with scientific research, informed by it and in constant interaction with it.

The Jean-Nicod Prize aims to promote philosophical research on cognition and to make known in France the work done abroad in this field. The recipient presents his or her research in a series of four conferences, which are then compiled into a book.

Organisation : Frédérique de Vignemont

The Jean Nicod Prize is financed by the Fondation Meyer pour le développement culturel et artistique, the Fondation CNRS and the Département d’Etudes Cognitives (DEC), with the support of the Ecole Normale Superieure ENS, the Université Paris Sciences et Lettres PSL and the Ecole des hautes études en sciences sociales EHESS.



For more information :

Interview with the philosopher of the mind Pierre Jacob

"Les Conférences Jean-Nicod : promouvoir les interactions entre la philosophie analytique et les sciences cognitives en France"




Previous recipients of the Jean Nicod Prize since 1993



Prix 2022 - Peter Godfrey-Smith, (Université de Sydney) - The Evolution of Experience

Prix 2021 - Frances Egan (Rutgers University, New Jersey) - Deflating Mental Representation

Prix 2020 - Leda Cosmides & John Tooby (University of California, Santa Barbara) - The Adaptationist Revolution and the Transformation of the Cognitive Sciences

Prix 2019 - Martine Nida-Rümelin (University of Fribourg), Philosophical fundamentals for scientific studies of consciousness

Prix 2017 - John Campbell (University of California Berkeley), language enters perception

PRix 2016 - Patrick Haggard (London University College), Volition, Agency, Responsibility : Cognitive Mechanisms of Human Action

Prix 2015 - David Chamlers (New York University), Spatial experience and virtual reality

Prix 2014 - Uta and Chris Frith (London University College), What makes us social

Prix 2013 - Ned Block (New York University), Conscience, Inconscience, Preconscience

Prix 2011 - Gergely Csibra and György Gergely (CEU Budapest), Pédagogie naturelle

Prix 2010Tyler Burge (University of Caligornia), Thresholds of Reason

Prix 2009 - Elisabeth Spelke (Harvard University), Sources of Human Knowledge

Prix 2008 - Kim Sterelny (Victoria University of Wellington), The Fate of the Third Chimpazee

Prix 2007 - Stephen Stich (Rutgers University), Moral Theory Meets Cognitive Science : How the Cognitive Science Can Transform Traditional Debates

Prix 2006 - Michael Tomasello (Institut Max-Planck d’Anthropologie Evolutionniste, Leipzig), Origins of Human Communication

Prix 2005 - Gilbert Harman (Princeton University), The Problem of Induction and Statistical Learning Theory

Prix 2004 - Zenon Pylyshyn (Rutgers University), Things and Places. How the mind connects with the world

Prix 2003 - Ray Jackendoff (Tufts University), Mental Structures. Language, Society, Consciousness

Prix 2002 - Ruth Millikan (University of Connecticut), Varieties of Meaning

Prix 2001 - Daniel Dennett (Tufts University), Sweet Dreams. Philosophical Obstacles to a Science of Consciousness

Prix 2000 - John Searle (University of California Berkeley), Rationality in Action

Prix 1999 - John Perry (Stanford University), Knowledge, Possibility, and Consciousness

Prix 1998 - Susan Carey (New York University), The Origins of Concepts : Evolution vs Culture

Prix 1997 - Jon Elster (University of Columbia), Strong Feelings. Emotion, Addiction, and Human Behavior

Prix 1996 - Hans Kamp (Stuttgart University), Thinking and Talking about Things

Prix 1995 - Donald Davidson (University of California Berkeley)

Prix 1994 - Fred Dretske (Stanford University), Naturalizing the Mind

Prix 1993 - Jerry Fodor (Rutgers University), The Elm and the Expert : Mentalese and Its Semantics