CA$10 – CA$20

University of Toronto Interdisciplinary Symposium on the Mind: Vision

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UTism 20/20 explores the connection between visual capacities and cognition in human and artificial systems in an interdisciplinary fashion.

About this Event


Date: February 1-2, 2020

Time: 10-3pm

Location: Room 1050, Earth Sciences Building, University of Toronto



Vision is considered one of our most important biological senses, if not the most important sense. It involves a vast network of complex cognitive visual pathways and offers important implications for the internal workings of our body. In essence, the relationship between vision and cognition is one of major interest in contemporary research. Studying vision may reveal fascinating details about the mind and unearth further connections between the physical and mental.

UTism will address the main question, “how does vision affect cognition?” from an interdisciplinary perspective based on contemporary research in philosophy, psychology, computer vision, neuroscience, and sign language. UTism seeks to generate relevant and novel insights in the cognitive science of vision and visual perception.



Nico Orlandi (Associate Professor of Philosophy, UC-Santa Cruz)

Chia-Chien Wu (Post-Doctoral Fellow, Harvard University)


John Vervaeke (Assistant Professor, Cognitive Science & Psychology, University of Toronto)

Jim John (Assistant Professor, Cognitive Science & Philosophy, University of Toronto)

Susanne Ferber ( Associate Professor, Psychology & Collaborative Program in Neuroscience, University of Toronto)

John Tsotsos (Professor, Electrical Engineering & Computer Science, York University)

James Elder (Professor, Human and Computer Vision, York University)

Corinne Ochinno (Research Faculty, Center on Cognition and Language, Rochester Institute of Technology)


SATURDAY, February 1

9:30-10:00 Registration

10:00-10:10 Opening Remarks

10:10-10:40 John Vervaeke, Seeing Into Believing on Mars

10:50-11:30 John Tsotsos, TBA

11:40-12:25 Lunch, Networking

12:30-1:10 Susanne Ferber, TBA

1:20-2:00 James Elder, 3D Shape Contour

2:00-2:50 Chia-Chien Wu, We have underestimated your capacity: Multiple Object Awareness (MOA)

2:50-2:55 Closing Remarks

SUNDAY, February 2

11:00-11:05 Opening Remarks

11:10-11:40 Jim John, TBA

11:45-12:30 Lunch, Networking

12:35-1:15 Corinne Occhino, Embodied Cognition, Visual Language and the Emergence of Form

1:25-2:15 Nico Orlandi, How does Vision Affect Cognition?

2:25-3:05 Panel Discussion, moderated by Dr. Corey Lewis

3:05-3:10 Closing Remarks

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