My research to date has explored communication, group living and social cognition in animals. I am especially interested in the early ontogeny of socio-cognitive abilities. For instance, I investigated the development of social learning abilities in young ravens and crows. At KOKU, I will look at the performance and development of Theory of Mind (ToM) in infants. Only recently, researchers targeted the ability to attribute mental states to other individuals of under 3-year-olds. Evidence suggest that there might be two ToM systems, i.e. an early implicit and a later explicit understanding of others’ beliefs. The aims of our current project are to figure out: (i) if implicit ToM is a unitary cognitive capacity, (ii) whether there are limits to the early implicit ToM capacities and (iii) what its developmental origins and determinants are.
Prof. Dr. Hannes Rakoczy (Georg-August-University Göttingen)
Prof. Dr. Ulf Liszkowski (University of Hamburg)