Investigation of Neural Mechanisms of Attention, Working Memory and Cognitive Control and Theory Construction( I )

Project Details


One ultimate challenge in human mind research is how billions of neurons can communicate and integrate information for synthesizing holistic cognitive function in the ever-changing environment. This question cannot be fully answered with correlational relationship but it also needs causal evidence. We propose to investigate the cognitive functions associated with cognitive control and to elucidate the neural mechanisms of its subcomponents such as visual attention, visual working memory, and inhibitory control in order to form an integrative theory of these functions with a complementary combination of neuroimaging and neuromodulational techniques to establish both correlational and causal evidence. We also need sophisticated and powerful tools and analytical methods in order to decipher and delineate the complex neural communication and synchronization in which the frequency modulation and amplitude modulation are intertwined in a dynamical and nonstationary way. Therefore we will utilize our high dimensional Holo-Hilbert Spectral Analysis to reveal the full spectra of nonlinear signals and to overcome the major flaws of current main stream of analytical methods (Fourier or wavelet analysis) which can only resolve linear problems. We expect to further extend our leading role in non-invasive brain stimulation studies in cognitive neuroscience in Asia then broaden academic influence in the field internationally. On the basis of these theoretical findings, our ultimate goals are: (1) to form a synergistic neural oscillation theory of cognitive control; (2) to provide opportunities for training new generations of researchers; (3) for integrative studies concerning cognitive neuroscience, clinical and translational medicine; (4) to offer evidence-based suggestions on precise and personalized clinical non-invasive brain stimulation treatments in neurological/psychiatric disorders; (5) to offer potential educational interventions to policy makers in order to improve the well-being in the society.
Effective start/end date1/08/1931/07/20

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals


  • neural oscillation
  • adaptive neural modulation
  • attention
  • working memory
  • cognitive control
  • depression
  • dementia
  • high dimensional Holo-Hilbert Spectral Analysis.


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