Consciousness is one of science’s final frontiers

Fascinating insight! What is consciousness anyway?

Consciousness is one of science’s final frontiers _ Financial Timesb3a383117f5awww.ft.comAppropriately for a head-to-head contest, the first round will pit the front of the brain against the back. The Global Neuronal Workspace theory, led by Professor Stanislas Dehaene at the Collège de France, suggests a starring role for the prefrontal cortex, often called the brain’s “CEO” because of its importance in planning and problem solving. The theory contends that competing sensory stimuli jostle for neural attention, but only those that are prioritised cut through to trigger other brain processes, such as working memory and decision-making. It is this “global broadcasting” across the brain that we experience as conscious thought.

Or does the engine of consciousness purr at the back of the brain? The Integrated Information Theory, pioneered by Professor Giulio Tononi from the University of Wisconsin, argues that the more interconnected a system’s parts are, the more likely it is to be conscious. He predicts that intricately connected cells near the back of the brain should make a major contribution.

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