[Comp-neuro] Postdoc position in computational modeling/EEG/fMRI: Shortcuts in the brain's visual hierarchy

Maximilian Riesenhuber mr287 at georgetown.edu
Tue Sep 10 04:27:17 CEST 2013

I have an opening for a postdoctoral fellow, starting immediately, to
participate in a new NIH-funded research project that tests the hypothesis
that the visual system can increase its processing speed on particular
tasks by basing task-relevant decisions on signals that originate from
intermediate processing levels, rather than requiring that stimuli are
processed by the entire visual hierarchy. This hypothesis will be tested
using a tightly integrated multidisciplinary approach consisting of
behavioral studies using eye tracking to determine the capabilities of
human ultra-rapid object detection, EEG and fMRI studies to determine when
and where in the brain object-selective responses occur, and computational
modeling studies to determine whether such multilevel object mechanisms can
account for human performance levels. Instead of the classic hierarchical
model, in which objects can only be coded at the very top of the system,
this project will show how “objects” can be detected by neurons located in
early visual areas – especially when those objects are behaviorally very
important and need to be localized accurately – with fundamental
implications for our understanding of the role of early and intermediate
visual areas in object detection.

The postdoc will receive training in computational modeling, EEG and fMRI.
The project is a collaboration between my group at Georgetown University
and Simon Thorpe and Jacob Martin at the CerCo in southern France. The
project provides funds to travel annually to the CerCo in Toulouse for
further training in EEG and visual psychophysics as well as computational

A quantitative background is required. Experience with computational
modeling is a strong plus, as is training in biological and/or machine
vision. Experience with Mac OS X, Linux, MATLAB, and C++ is helpful. This
position is also of interest for PhDs in computer science or engineering
with an interest in moving into computational neuroscience.

Georgetown University has a vibrant neuroscience community with over fifty
labs participating in the Interdisciplinary Program in Neuroscience.
Georgetown's scenic campus is located at the edge of Washington, DC, one of
the most intellectual and culturally rich cities in the country.
Interested candidates should send a CV, a brief (1 page) statement of
research interests, representative reprints, and the names and contact
information of three references by email to Maximilian Riesenhuber (
mr287 at georgetown.edu). Review of applications will begin immediately, and
will continue until the position is filled. Informal inquiries are welcome.

Maximilian Riesenhuber
Lab for Computational Cognitive Neuroscience
Department of Neuroscience
Georgetown University Medical Center
Research Building Room WP-12
3970 Reservoir Rd., NW
Washington, DC 20007

phone: 202-687-9198 * fax: 202-784-3562 * email: mr287 at georgetown.edu
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