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DISSELF II - Self-Perception in Human and Artificial Agents

23rd October 2019 | 9h00 | Meeting Room 1


The capacity to integrate self-related information across multiple sensory channels is fundamental to building cohesive representations of our self, body and world. Self-perception scaffolds both our subjective experience of being present, in the here and now, and our successful navigation in a complex physical and social environment. 

Recent years have seen a substantial increase in research aiming at implementing complex forms of mental states such as self-consciousness in artificial agents such as robots and machines. The aim of our interdisciplinary workshop is to bring together philosophers, psychologists, computer scientists and neuroscientists in order to address the following (non-exhaustive) list of questions:

  • What are the mechanisms underlying self-perception in humans?
  • What is an artificial agent?
  • How do I experience and recognize my ‘self’ inside a body that interacts constantly and dynamically with the physical and social environment?
  • Can we “transfer” this knowledge into artificial bodies in order to build autonomous and self-conscious robots and machines?
  • What does alterations of self-perception teach us about our typical sense of self and more generally about conscious experiences?
  • What are the similarities and dissimilarities of self-perception in human and artificial agents? 


Our one-day workshop will be followed by the 4th AVANT Conference — Trends in Interdisciplinary studies: The Fragmentation of Cognition allowing thereby wider and fruitful exchanges between the speakers and the participants of the conference and the workshop. 


  • Malika AUVRAY — Institut des Systèmes Intelligents et Robotique, Paris 
  • Anna CIAUNICA — MLAG-Institute of Philosophy, University of Porto.
  • António MARQUES (TBC)— Politénico do Porto, Escola Superior de Saúde.
  • Veronica ORVALHO — Department of Computer Science, University of Porto.
  • Manos TSAKIRIS — Royal Holloway, University of London.
  • David HARRIS SMITH — McMaster, McMaster University, Canada.


Notifications of acceptance will be sent out by 30th of August. 


For any queries please contact Dr. Anna Ciaunica and Diana Couto at


  • Anna Ciaunica (MLAG-IF, University of Porto)
  • Sofia Miguens (MLAG-IF, University of Porto)
  • Diana Couto (LOGOS/University of Barcelona & MLAG-IF/University of Porto)

Isabel Marques (Univ. of Porto – IF)

Organization and Funding:

Research Group Mind Language and Action Group (MLAG)
Instituto de Filosofia da Universidade do Porto - FIL/00502
Projeto BIAL: Estranged from Oneself, Estranged from the Others: Investigating the Effect of Depersonalisation on Self-Other Mirroring
Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia (FCT)
U.Porto e Banco Santander - Programa Santander Universidades

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