Université Paul Sabatier


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Construction of mental states and representations (CREMe)


My current work investigates the neurocognitive mechanisms involved in action awareness and intention inference in healthy subjects and in patients with schizophrenia using both behavioural and brain imaging (fMRI) techniques. In one group of studies I evaluate how some mechanisms of action control allow one to be aware of some aspects of one’s actions and how these mechanisms can account for different aspects of one’s action phenomenology. In parallel with my investigation of action awareness, I am also interested in understanding how one can correctly infer intention when observing another agent’s behaviour. This work uses bayesian modelling as a theoretical framework to understand what information contributes to correct inferences about another person’s intentions ; how these different types of information interact and how this interaction is influenced by the intentional content. I am also conducting these two groups of studies in patients with schizophrenia, in order to evaluate whether some symptoms of this pathology may be best understood as an action awareness or an intention inference deficit.




- Pyschopathology
- Statistics


action awareness, intention, schizophrenia, fMRI


I studied Biochemistry, Genetics, and Ecology at the University of Pierre and Marie Curie in Paris. I then did my PhD (1999-2002) in Neuropsychology with Marc Jeannerod at the Institute of Cognitive Sciences in Lyon. I investigated the sense of agency in healthy subjects and in patients with schizophrenia. During my PhD I also conducted brain imaging studies on action awareness and action control with Chris Frith and Dick Passingham at the Leopold Functional Imaging Laboratory of London. I then worked as a postdoctoral fellow (2002-2003) in the Brain Imaging Center of Dartmouth College in the United States with Scott Grafton and Scott Frey. In 2004 I obtained a fulltime CNRS research position in the Institute of Cognitive Sciences in Lyon. I currently work in the Cerebral and Cognition laboratory in Toulouse and hold a Neuro grant from the French National Research Agency.


* Farrer C, Frey SH, Van Horn JD, Tunik E, Turk D, Inati S, Grafton ST. 2008. The Angular gyrus computes action awareness representations. Cerebral Cortex, 18(2):254-61. * Chambon, V, Koechlin, E, Franck, Fakra, E, Ciuperca, G, Azorian, JM & Farrer, C. 2008. The architecture of cognitive control in Schizophrenia. Brain, 131(Pt 4):962-70. * Farrer C, Franck N, Georgieff N., Frith C.D., Decéty J., d’amato T. & Jeannerod M. 2004. The neural correlates of agency in Schizophrenia”. Psychiatry Research Neuroimaging, 131(1):31-44. * Farrer C, Franck N, Georgieff N, Frith CD, Decéty J & Jeannerod M. 2003. Modulating The sense of agency : a PET study”. Neuroimage, 18(2):324-33. * Farrer, C & Frith, CD. 2002. Experiencing oneself vs another person as being the cause of an action : the neural correlates of the experience of agency ». Neuroimage, 15 : 596-603. * Franck N, Farrer C, Georgieff N, Marie-Cardine M, Daléry J, d’Amato T, Jeannerod M. 2001. Defective recognition of one’s own actions in patients with schizophrenia. American Journal of Psychiatry, 158, 454-459.




* Neuro National Research Agency grant (ANR). French Government Research.Agency 2007-2010. * Scientific research council grant (CSR), psychiatric hospital Le Vinatier. 2004-2006 and 2006-2008. * Candidate INSERM/CNRS fellowship, Medical Research Foundation (FRM). 2003-2004. * Post-doctoral fellowship, Medical Research Foundation (FRM). 2002-2003. * PhD fellowship, Medical Research Foundation (FRM). 2001-2002. * European PhD fellowship, Eurodoc. 1999-2000.

Behavioural and electrophysiological data for the study : ’Responsibility and the sense of agency enhance empathy for pain’.


Exotic pictures around the world : Pierre ’s Photo Gallery

Mise à jour 16/09/2014