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Expecting Ourselves: Embodied Prediction and the Construction of Conscious Experience

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 XSPECT project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the XSPECT project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "XSPECT" about.

experiential    time    combine    socially    prediction    communicating    selfhood    perspectives    interdisciplinary    vision    active    layered    idea    reflective    signaling    arousal    span    predictive    barrage    striving    scope    internal    visceral    motor    brain    behaviors    special    spiraling    relations    simultaneously    popular    integrative    agency    exteroceptive    sensory    enriched    inner    science    experimentation    puzzle    programs    expectations    introspection    context    name    mediated    mechanisms    multiple    sensations    forms    divided    scales    agents    hunger    world    harness    cognition    themselves    predict    xspect    interoceptive    first    construction    muscular    explores    ways    action    extends    itch    edge    engine    embodied    unfold    nature    successful    array    incoming    possibility    leveraging    hold    sub    space    puzzling    collaborative    insights    flows    argument    physiological    self    philosophical    predictions    conscious    innovation    interacting   

Project "XSPECT" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: BN1 9RH

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 United Kingdom [UK]
 Project website
 Total cost 1˙391˙134 €
 EC max contribution 1˙391˙134 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2015-AdG
 Funding Scheme ERC-ADG
 Starting year 2017
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2017-01-01   to  2020-12-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    THE UNIVERSITY OF SUSSEX UK (BRIGHTON) coordinator 757˙447.00
2    THE UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH UK (EDINBURGH) participant 633˙687.00


 Project objective

This project (short name, XSPECT) aims to harness the emerging science of the predictive brain to deliver new insights into the nature, scope, mechanisms and (most importantly) the very possibility of conscious experience. The project thus explores and extends the vision of the brain as an inner engine continuously striving to predict the incoming sensory barrage. The key innovation is to consider this increasingly popular vision in the special context of embodied agents able to predict many of their own evolving states and responses – agents able to ‘expect themselves’. These crucial self-expectations span the interoceptive (targeting the internal sensory flows signaling our own physiological states, such as hunger, arousal, itch, and muscular and visceral sensations) and the exteroceptive (targeting the world, and our own behaviors as they might unfold over multiple scales of space and time). XSPECT explores the idea that such interacting states of complex, layered self-prediction hold the key to understanding much that is puzzling about conscious experience.

The project is divided into three simultaneously active sub-projects. The first sub-project concerns relations between prediction, motor action, and experience. The second sub-project targets the role of interoceptive prediction in the construction of experience. The third sub-project considers ways in which more reflective forms of conscious experience (involving agency, selfhood, and the introspection of own experiential states) are further enriched by a spiraling array of socially mediated higher-level self-predictions.

XSPECT will combine integrative philosophical argument, collaborative experimentation, and leading edge interdisciplinary research and discussion, leveraging two very successful but under-communicating research programs (‘embodied cognition’ and ‘the predictive brain’) to offer new perspectives on the puzzle of conscious experience.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2018 Hugh Rabagliati, Alexander Robertson, David Carmel
The importance of awareness for understanding language.
published pages: 190-208, ISSN: 0096-3445, DOI: 10.1037/xge0000348
Journal of Experimental Psychology: General 147/2 2020-01-29
2018 Amy T. Walsh, David Carmel, David Harper, Gina M. Grimshaw
Motivation enhances control of positive and negative emotional distractions
published pages: 1556-1562, ISSN: 1069-9384, DOI: 10.3758/s13423-017-1414-5
Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 25/4 2020-01-29
2018 Gina M. Grimshaw, Laura S. Kranz, David Carmel, Rosie E. Moody, Christel Devue
Contrasting reactive and proactive control of emotional distraction.
published pages: 26-38, ISSN: 1528-3542, DOI: 10.1037/emo0000337
Emotion 18/1 2020-01-29
2017 Andy Clark
Busting Out: Predictive Brains, Embodied Minds, and the Puzzle of the Evidentiary Veil
published pages: 727-753, ISSN: 0029-4624, DOI: 10.1111/nous.12140
Noûs 51/4 2020-01-29
2018 Adam Linson, Andy Clark, Subramanian Ramamoorthy, Karl Friston
The Active Inference Approach to Ecological Perception: General Information Dynamics for Natural and Artificial Embodied Cognition
published pages: , ISSN: 2296-9144, DOI: 10.3389/frobt.2018.00021
Frontiers in Robotics and AI 5 2020-01-29
2017 Mark Miller, Andy Clark
Happily entangled: prediction, emotion, and the embodied mind
published pages: 1-17, ISSN: 0039-7857, DOI: 10.1007/s11229-017-1399-7
Synthese 2020-01-29
2018 Susan L. Denham, Dávid Farkas, Raymond van Ee, Mihaela Taranu, Zsuzsanna Kocsis, Marina Wimmer, David Carmel, István Winkler
Similar but separate systems underlie perceptual bistability in vision and audition
published pages: , ISSN: 2045-2322, DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-25587-2
Scientific Reports 8/1 2020-01-29
2018 Andy Clark
A nice surprise? Predictive processing and the active pursuit of novelty
published pages: 521-534, ISSN: 1568-7759, DOI: 10.1007/s11097-017-9525-z
Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 17/3 2020-01-29
2018 Andy Clark
Beyond the ‘Bayesian Blur’: Probabilistic Brains and the Nature of Subjective Experience
published pages: , ISSN: 1355-8250, DOI:
Journal of Consciousness Studies 2020-01-29
2019 Andy Clark
Priors and Prejudices
published pages: , ISSN: 2168-9105, DOI:
Res Philosophica 2020-01-29
2017 Andy Clark
Precisions, slopes, and representational re-description
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
Precisions, Slopes, and Representational Redescription 2020-01-29
2017 Sam Wilkinson, Guy Dodgson, Kevin Meares
Predictive Processing and the Varieties of Psychological Trauma
published pages: , ISSN: 1664-1078, DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.01840
Frontiers in Psychology 8 2020-01-29
2017 Andy Clark
Predictions, precision, and agentive attention
published pages: , ISSN: 1053-8100, DOI: 10.1016/j.concog.2017.06.013
Consciousness and Cognition 2020-01-29
2018 Steve Torrance, Frank Schumann
The spur of the moment: what jazz improvisation tells cognitive science
published pages: , ISSN: 0951-5666, DOI: 10.1007/s00146-018-0838-4
AI & SOCIETY 2020-01-29
2017 Michael D Tooley, David Carmel, Angus Chapman, Gina M Grimshaw
Dissociating the physiological components of unconscious emotional responses
published pages: , ISSN: 2057-2107, DOI: 10.1093/nc/nix021
Neuroscience of Consciousness 2017/1 2020-01-29
2017 Amy T. Walsh, David Carmel, Gina M. Grimshaw
Reward elicits cognitive control over emotional distraction: Evidence from pupillometry
published pages: , ISSN: 1530-7026, DOI: 10.3758/s13415-018-00669-w
Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience 2020-01-29
2019 Andrea Polonioli, Mariana Vega-Mendoza, Brittany Blankinship, David Carmel
Reporting in Experimental Philosophy: Current Standards and Recommendations for Future Practice
published pages: 1–25, ISSN: 1878-5158, DOI: 10.1007/s13164-018-0414-3
Review of Philosophy and Psychology 2020-01-29

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The information about "XSPECT" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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