Methodological Artefacts in Consciousness Science

Journal of Consciousness Studies 24 (11-12):94-117 (2017)
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Abstract

Consciousness is scientifically challenging to study because of its subjective aspect. This leads researchers to rely on report-based experimental paradigms in order to discover neural correlates of consciousness (NCCs). I argue that the reliance on reports has biased the search for NCCs, thus creating what I call 'methodological artefacts'. This paper has three main goals: first, describe the measurement problem in consciousness science and argue that this problem led to the emergence of methodological artefacts. Second, provide a critical assessment of the NCCs put forward by the global neuronal workspace theory. Third, provide the means of dissociating genuine NCCs from methodological artefacts.

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Matthias Michel
New York University

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