Staff – University of Copenhagen

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Department of Media, Cognition and Communication > Staff

Thor Grünbaum

Thor Grünbaum

Associate professor, deputy head of department

Primary fields of research

My research is focused on a number of issues in philosophy of action (mind), philosophy of psychology, and philosophy of science.

  • Philosophy of action/mind: Agent’s knowledge, intentions, control of action, sense of agency
  • Philosophy of psychology/cognitive neuroscience: Relation between common-sense psychology and scientific psychology, individuation of computational mechanisms, perception-action models
  • Philosophy of science: Model testing, under-determination problems in cognitive neuroscience, mechanistic explanation.

Selected Publications (for a full list)

Philosophy of action and mind:

  • Grünbaum, T. (2013). Seeing what I am doing. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 86(2), 295-318.
  • Grünbaum, T. (2012). First-Person and Minimal Self-Consciousness. In S. Miguens, & G. Preyer (Eds.), Consciousness and Subjectivity. (pp. 297-320). Heusenstamm: Ontos Verlag.
  • Grünbaum, T. (2011). Perception and non-inferential knowledge of action. Philosophical Explorations, 14(2), 153-167.
  • Grünbaum, T. (2009). Anscombe and Practical Knowledge of What is Happening. Grazer Philosophische Studien, 78, 41-67.
  • Grünbaum, T. (2008). Trying and the Arguments from Total Failure. Philosophia, 36(1), 67-86.

Philosophy of psychology/cognitive neuroscience:

  • Grünbaum, T. (forthcoming). The Perception-Action Model: Counting Computational Mechanisms. Mind & Language.
  • Grünbaum, T. (2015). The feeling of agency hypothesis: a critique. Synthese, 192(10), 3313-3337.
  • Grünbaum, T. (2012). Commonsense psychology, dual visual streams, and the individuation of action. Philosophical Psychology, 25(1), 25-47.

Experimental and theoretical work in cognitive psychology/neuroscience:

  • Christensen, M. S. & Grünbaum, T. (in press). Sense of moving: Moving closer to the movement. In T. Grünbaum & M. S. Christensen (Eds.), Sensation of Movement. Abingdon, UK: Routledge.
  • Christiansen, J. H., Christensen, J. H., Grünbaum, T., & Kyllingsbæk, S. (2014). A Common Representation of Spatial Features Drives Action and Perception: Grasping and Judging Object Features within Trials. PloS one, 9(5), 1-14. [e94744].
  • Overgaard, M., & Grünbaum, T. (2012). Cognitive and non-cognitive conceptions of consciousness. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 16(3), 137-137.
  • Overgaard, M., & Grünbaum, T. (2011). Consciousness and modality: On the possible preserved visual consciousness in blindsight subjects. Consciousness and Cognition, (20), 1855–1859.

Major Research Grants

  • DFF 2016-2020: PI on collaborative research project (DKr. 5,670,757): "Intention, Selection, and Agency" (with Professor of Psychology, University of Copenhagen, Søren Kyllingsbæk)
  • DFF 2012-2015: Co-PI on collaborative research project (DKr. 6,254,816): “Phenomenal Consciousness and Cognitive Motor Control” (with Associate Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, Aarhus University, Morten Overgaard (PI)).
  • DFF 2010-2014: Co-PI on collaborative research project (DKr. 7,783,200): “Intentional action, attention to objects, and working memory” (with Associate Professor of Psychology, University of Copenhagen, Søren Kyllingsbæk (PI)).

Service to profession

  • Associate Editor of Philosophical Explorations (2015-)
  • Referee for public and private research foundations: European Research Council, The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research, The Welcome Foundation
  • Ad hoc reviewer: Mind, Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, Australasian Journal of Philosophy, Philosophical Studies, Synthese, Philosophical Quarterly, Mind & Language, Philosophical Psychology
  • President of Danish Society for Philosophy and Psychology (2009-)

Teaching and supervision

I teach and supervise in most areas of theoretical philosophy: philosophy of mind, philosophy of science, epistemology, metaphysics, and philosophy of language. Students are more than welcome to contact me if they want to know more or to discuss ideas or questions about their thesis.

I also teach and supervise MA theses in our cognitive science programme.

Recently taught courses:




Cognitive Science:


  • Introduction to Cognitive Science, Fall 2016: Course Schedule.
  • Empirical Psychology, Cognitive Neuroscience, and Communication, Spring 2015: Course Schedule.

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