student profile: Mr Jules Smith-ferguson


Thesis work

Thesis title: Proto-Cognition and Brainless Choices: Decision making in simple organisms

Supervisors: Madeleine BEEKMAN

Thesis abstract:

This interdisciplinary PhD research project builds upon the philosophical work I performed during my honours project, in which I examined current theory and research around minimally cognitive systems. During my PhD I will build on my philosophical work and incorporate experimental investigations of the behaviour of the quasi-cognitive acellular slime mould, �em�Physarum polycephalum. �/em�My PhD project will therefore both increase our empirical understanding of the evolution of cognition and decision-making, as well as provide the building blocks for a comprehensive account of the organismal hierarchies of cognition.

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