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Trends Cogn Sci. 2012 Feb;16(2):114-21. doi: 10.1016/j.tics.2011.12.007. Epub 2012 Jan 3.

Brain-to-brain coupling: a mechanism for creating and sharing a social world.

Author information

1
Neuroscience Institute, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08540, USA. hasson@princeton.edu

Abstract

Cognition materializes in an interpersonal space. The emergence of complex behaviors requires the coordination of actions among individuals according to a shared set of rules. Despite the central role of other individuals in shaping one's mind, most cognitive studies focus on processes that occur within a single individual. We call for a shift from a single-brain to a multi-brain frame of reference. We argue that in many cases the neural processes in one brain are coupled to the neural processes in another brain via the transmission of a signal through the environment. Brain-to-brain coupling constrains and shapes the actions of each individual in a social network, leading to complex joint behaviors that could not have emerged in isolation.

PMID:
22221820
PMCID:
PMC3269540
DOI:
10.1016/j.tics.2011.12.007
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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