Connecting European Neuroscience

Ph.D. Student in Marseille/France

12 April 2019

Ph.D. Student in Marseille/France

Job ID


A key determinant of animal (and artificial) intelligence is the capacity to balance exploitation (executing well-known rewarding routines) and exploration (searching for new information about the environment). This project has two main objectives: 1) better understand how uncertainty impact the exploration/exploitation tradeoff and 2) test the validity and predictions of a recent theoretical model that proposed an opponent modulation of the exploration/exploitation tradeoff by the direct and indirect basal ganglia pathways.
To reach these objectives, the applicant will: 1) Develop a new foraging task for mice in a large open-field arena. The task will be designed such as animals rely heavily on vibrissal information to
orient themselves. 2) Manipulate task parameters to obtain, in different mice, different levels of exploration. 3) Examine,
in these mice, the functional coupling between the barrel cortex, (which process vibrissal information) and the striatal
neurons forming the direct and indirect pathways. 4) Use model-based analysis of the behavioral and
neuronal data.

Candidates with a background in one of the following fields are welcome to apply. Neuroscience, System Biology,
Ethology, Computer/Data Science, Physics. Programming and/or Engineering skills will be a plus.
Application should be made through the Ph.D. program website: before the 22nd of April.
Informal contact can be made with the Dr. David Robbe

Job Information

Closing date:
Employment start date:
Contract length:
3 years
Faculté des Sciences de Luminy

Contact Information

David Robbe
Neural Bases of Sensorimotor learning
Institut de Neurobiologie de la Méditerranée (INMED) INSERM-UMR1249
163, avenue de Luminy. BP13
13273 Marseille Cedex 9

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