Vincent Di Lollo

Vincent di Lollo

Vincent Di Lollo was born in Gorizia, in the Italian north-east. As a teenager, he was shipped to Western Australia along with his parents, two brothers, and lots of other WW2 refugees. There, he worked as a labourer in a steel foundry, as a stonemason's assistant, and as a "grizzly-man" (a glorified powder monkey) in a gold mine.

Having completed a Ph.D. at the University of Western Australia, Di Lollo spent three years in the U.S.A. as a Fulbright Scholar (Indiana University, University of Michigan, Princeton University). After a second stint at the University of Western Australia, this time as Lecturer, then Senior Lecturer, then Reader, he discovered Canada, and never looked back! He’s been there since 1975, as Professor of Psychology at the University of Manitoba (1975-78), at the University of Alberta (1978-96), as Honorary Professor at UBC (1996-2004) and now as Adjunct Professor at SFU in Vancouver.

Di Lollo’s research has been, and continues to be, generously supported by NSERC and, to a lesser extent, by other granting agencies. 

OPAM Keynote Address 2007: Memory and Prediction: That's what the brain is in business for

In agreement with neuroanatomical evidence, but contrary to conventional feed forward notions, my colleagues and I hold to a scheme in which perceptions emerge from iterative exchanges between brain regions linked by reentrant pathways. In this scheme, the brain is seen as a repository of memories in the form of neural networks (cell assemblies and phase sequences) established through Hebbian learning. Those networks are used in cortical reentrant loops to set up moment-to-moment action plans for perceiving objects and for predicting behaviour sequences. Long-standing problems, including the development of perceptual categories and the “binding” problem, are resolved naturally within this conceptual framework. I will illustrate this viewpoint with evidence from behavioural manifestations such as visual masking, and electrophysiological evidence from MEG and event-related potentials that provide converging evidence for a reentrant theory of perception and cognition.


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