During my PhD project I designed and performed several experiments related to visual perception and visual awareness. Although visual perception has been widely studied, it remains elusive how information from the outside world is being transformed into full-blown conscious visual experiences. Using different techniques (EEG, TMS and fMRI), we demonstrated that it is more fruitful to study visual awareness in terms of interactions in the brain and how we interact with the outside world, than trying to discover locations in the brain where visual awareness could reside. These findings inspired me to take my research to the next level and develop ways to infer the role of metacognition in decision-making. Traditionally, decisions with low levels of metacognition have been considered biased and unreliable and therefore inferior to decision-making with high levels of metacognition. In contrast, emerging research demonstrates that expertise allows for highly sophisticated goal-directed decision-making without conscious deliberation. In order to optimize decision-making, we should determine how metacognition modulates our decision process and how to balance “intuitive” and “rational” decision-making.
- Implicit learning and statistical learning
- Visual awareness
- Decision-making, reward processing, gambling and addiction