Pascal Fries received the Boehringer Ingelheim FENS Research Award 2008.
35 year old Dr. Pascal Fries from the F.C. Donders Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging in Nijmegen, The Netherlands, received the Boehringer Ingelheim FENS Research Award 2008 for his seminal contributions to the cognitive neurosciences.
The major scientific questions that are at the focus of Dr. Fries research relate to the issue of how perception is organised, how it is influenced by attention, and what the neural mechanisms are that instantiate these functions. One of his recently published theories embodies one of the major challenges in cognitive neuroscience: to link descriptions and explanations of perception, action, memory, etc. at the psychological level to a level of description and explanation of the neuronal substrate instantiating these functions. This is often referred to as vertical integration. Pascal Fries contributions and scientific potential are widely recognised.
Pascal Fries did his PhD with Prof. Wolf Singer in the Department of Neurophysiology of the Max-Planck-Institute for Brain Research in Frankfurt. From 1999 2001 he worked as a postdoctoral fellow with Dr. Robert Desimone at the Laboratory of Neuropsychology of the National Institute of Mental Health in Bethesda, Maryland, USA. Since 2001 he is Principal Investigator at the F.C. Donders Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging in Nijmegen, The Netherlands. In 2006 Dr. Fries was recipient of the European Young Investigator Award from the European Science Foundation (ESF). In his EURYI project, he uses newly established methods to investigate the coherence topography among brain areas and their functional relevance for central cognitive operations and behaviour. With the prize money of the Boehringer Ingelheim FENS Research Award he plans to make these datasets publicly available.
The Boehringer Ingelheim FENS Research Award 2008 was presented in Geneva during the Forum of European Neuroscience 2008 (July 12 - 16, 2008). The prize winner gave a special lecture at the meeting.