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Metacontrol SIGNED

Cognitive control in context: Neural, functional, and social mechanisms of metacontrol

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "Metacontrol" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: RAPENBURG 70
city: LEIDEN
postcode: 2311 EZ

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Netherlands [NL]
 Project website
 Total cost 2˙500˙000 €
 EC max contribution 2˙500˙000 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2015-AdG
 Funding Scheme ERC-ADG
 Starting year 2016
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2016-12-01   to  2021-11-30


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    UNIVERSITEIT LEIDEN NL (LEIDEN) coordinator 2˙500˙000.00


 Project objective

Human behavior is commonly understood as emerging from a struggle between will and habit, i.e., between “intentional” processes driven by the current goal and “automatic” processes driven by available stimuli. This scenario suggests that it is mainly the goal-related processes that render behavior adaptive. Based on a novel theoretical framework (the Metacontrol State Model, combined with the Theory of Event Coding) that is motivated by recent behavioral and neuroscientific observations, I suggest an alternative view and argue that people can control the relative contributions of goal-driven and stimulus-driven processes to decision-making and action selection. In particular, people regulate the interaction between these processes by determining the ratio between (goal) persistence and flexi-bility, depending on task, situation, and personal experience—a process that I refer to as “metacontrol”. The project aims to identify and trace individual “metacontrol policies” (biases towards persistence or flexibility) and task- and condition-specific changes therein by means of behavioral, computational, and neuroscientific techniques, and by using virtual-reality methods. I shall study, account for, and try predicting individual differences in the choice and implementation of such policies, identify and explain the cognitive and social consequences of adopting a particular policy, and investigate whether and how people can adopt meta¬control policies from others—either intentionally or automati-cally. I shall also study whether and to what degree people use situational cues to automatize the implementation of suitable policies, and whether often-used, highly practiced policies can become chron-ified and turn into a trait-like processing style, as suggested by cultural studies.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2018 Luisa Prochazkova, Dominique P. Lippelt, Lorenza S. Colzato, Martin Kuchar, Zsuzsika Sjoerds, Bernhard Hommel
Exploring the effect of microdosing psychedelics on creativity in an open-label natural setting
published pages: 3401-3413, ISSN: 0033-3158, DOI: 10.1007/s00213-018-5049-7
Psychopharmacology 235/12 2020-02-13
2019 Bernhard Hommel
Binary Theorizing Does Not Account for Action Control
published pages: , ISSN: 1664-1078, DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2019.02542
Frontiers in Psychology 10 2020-02-13
2019 Bernhard Hommel
Affect and control: A conceptual clarification
published pages: 1-6, ISSN: 0167-8760, DOI: 10.1016/j.ijpsycho.2019.07.006
International Journal of Psychophysiology 144 2020-02-13
2019 Anne Charlotte Trutti, Zsuzsika Sjoerds, Bernhard Hommel
Attentional blink and putative noninvasive dopamine markers: Two experiments to consolidate possible associations
published pages: 1444-1457, ISSN: 1530-7026, DOI: 10.3758/s13415-019-00717-z
Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience 19/6 2020-02-13
2020 Lorenza S. Colzato, Laura Steenbergen, Bernhard Hommel
Rumination impairs the control of stimulus-induced retrieval of irrelevant information, but not attention, control, or response selection in general
published pages: 204-216, ISSN: 0340-0727, DOI:
Psychological Research 84 2020-02-13
2019 Diana Kim, Bernhard Hommel
Social Cognition 2.0: Toward Mechanistic Theorizing
published pages: , ISSN: 1664-1078, DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2019.02643
Frontiers in Psychology 10 2020-02-13
2019 Saskia Heijnen, Roy de Kleijn, Bernhard Hommel
The Impact of Human–Robot Synchronization on Anthropomorphization
published pages: , ISSN: 1664-1078, DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2018.02607
Frontiers in Psychology 9 2020-02-13
2019 Bernhard Hommel, Craig S. Chapman, Paul Cisek, Heather F. Neyedli, Joo-Hyun Song, Timothy N. Welsh
No one knows what attention is
published pages: 2288-2303, ISSN: 1943-3921, DOI: 10.3758/s13414-019-01846-w
Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics 81/7 2020-02-13
2019 Bernhard Hommel
Theory of Event Coding (TEC) V2.0: Representing and controlling perception and action
published pages: 2139-2154, ISSN: 1943-3921, DOI: 10.3758/s13414-019-01779-4
Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics 81/7 2020-02-13
2020 Weitao Zhang, Zsuzsika Sjoerds, Bernhard Hommel
Metacontrol of human creativity: The neurocognitive mechanisms of convergent and divergent thinking
published pages: 116572, ISSN: 1053-8119, DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2020.116572
NeuroImage 210 2020-02-13
2019 Vera Mekern, Bernhard Hommel, Zsuzsika Sjoerds
Computational models of creativity: a review of single-process and multi-process recent approaches to demystify creative cognition
published pages: 47-54, ISSN: 2352-1546, DOI: 10.1016/j.cobeha.2018.09.008
Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences 27 2019-08-05
2017 Bernhard Hommel, Lorenza S. Colzato
The Grand Challenge: Integrating Nomothetic and Ideographic Approaches to Human Cognition
published pages: , ISSN: 1664-1078, DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00100
Frontiers in Psychology 8 2019-06-13
2017 Bernhard Hommel, Reinout W. Wiers
Towards a Unitary Approach to Human Action Control
published pages: 940-949, ISSN: 1364-6613, DOI: 10.1016/j.tics.2017.09.009
Trends in Cognitive Sciences 21/12 2019-06-13
2017 Bernhard Hommel, Lorenza S. Colzato
Meditation and Metacontrol
published pages: 115-121, ISSN: 2509-3290, DOI: 10.1007/s41465-017-0017-4
Journal of Cognitive Enhancement 1/2 2019-06-13
2018 Lorenza S. Colzato, Laura Steenbergen, Bernhard Hommel
Rumination impairs the control of stimulus-induced retrieval of irrelevant information, but not attention, control, or response selection in general
published pages: , ISSN: 0340-0727, DOI: 10.1007/s00426-018-0986-7
Psychological Research 2019-08-05
2018 Bernhard Hommel
Representing Oneself and Others
published pages: 323-331, ISSN: 1618-3169, DOI: 10.1027/1618-3169/a000433
Experimental Psychology 65/6 2019-08-05
2019 Anne C. Trutti, Martijn J. Mulder, Bernhard Hommel, Birte U. Forstmann
Functional neuroanatomical review of the ventral tegmental area
published pages: 258-268, ISSN: 1053-8119, DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2019.01.062
NeuroImage 191 2019-08-29

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