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Simon van Gaal

Simon van Gaal
Simon van Gaal

is a cognitive neuroscientist working at the Brain and Cognition department of the University of Amsterdam and the Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging at the Donders Institute for Brain Cognition and Behavior. He studies the role of consciousness in cognitive control and decision-making using various imaging techniques (EEG, functional/structural MRI, MEG). 'Hopefully, this will eventually contribute to a better understanding of the neural mechanisms and function of consciousness'.
He started his PhD in May 2005 at the University of Amsterdam. In that period, he was part of the Cognitive Neuroscience Group of Victor Lamme and the Amsterdam Center for the study of Adaptive Control in Brain and Behavior (ACACia) of Richard Ridderinkhof. After obtaining his PhD, he started working as a post-doc in Victor Lamme's Lab ( At the end of 2010 he moved to Paris for two years to work together with Stanislas Dehaene, Lionel Naccache and Laurent Cohen (, on an NWO Rubicon grant). He recently returned to the Netherlands on an NWO Veni grant.

Archive available for: Simon van Gaal

  • Science Series

    Who reigns over my brain?

    With: Abdelkader Benali, Andries van der Leij, Katinka Baehr, Simon van Gaal

    The first in a series of science debates: Science Unlimited The Series. In this programme three distinguished guests talk about free will. Does it exist or not? Kathinka Baehr (VPRO) leads the conversation between neuro psychologist Simon van Gaal, neuro-marketing researcher Andries van der Leij and writer Abdelkader Benali.
    The programme is in Dutch, and made by Writers Unlimited (Ger Wieberdink) and Bibliotheek Den Haag. Sponsored by the Municipality of The Hague.