Connecting European Neuroscience

Neural control of behaviour - Series 1: Navigation

10-16 December 2017, Obergurgl, Austria

Navigation and spatial orientation are crucial capacities for animals and humans. What are the sensory cues and behavioural strategies that underlie navigation? And what are the neural mechanisms responsible for navigation?  These questions have been studied historically by two very different research traditions. Research coming from ethology and ecology has examined how animals such as insects or birds navigate in the wild over long distances, and what sensory cues they are using. Research coming from neuroscience and psychology have mostly studied navigation in rats and mice in laboratory mazes, and discovered several spatial cell types, including place cells, grid cells and head-direction cells. In this FENS Winter School we will aim to bridge the gap between these traditions: to broadly cover the various approaches used to study the neurobiology of navigation. We will discuss animal navigation across species – including insects, birds, bats, rodents, and humans. We will discuss our state-of-the-art knowledge concerning the sensory cues, behavioural strategies and neural mechanisms underlying navigation – and, importantly, we will also highlight what we do not know, i.e. where future challenges lie. This course is meant for PhD students and postdocs, preferably with some knowledge of the subject.

Scientific chairs

Henrik Mouritsen, Oldenburg University, Germany   Nachum Ulanovsky, Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel   Eric Warrant, Lund University, Sweden

Faculty members

Nikita Chernetsov, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Faculty of Biology, St. Petersburg State University, Russia
Marie Dacke, Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Lund University, Sweden
David FosterDepartment of Psychology, University of California Berkeley, USA
Anna Gagliardo, Department of Biology, Pisa University, Italy
Stanley Heinze, Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Lund University, Sweden
Peter Hore, Department of Chemistry, University of Oxford, UK
Vivek Jayaraman, Janelia Research Campus, Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), Ashburn, Virginia, USA
Edvard Moser, Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience, Norway
Thomas  Wolbers, German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Germany


Download the programme  


Registration and stipends

  • Fee: FENS Members: 495 EUR
             FENS Non-members: 575 EUR
  • Registration fee covers tuition, accommodation and meals.
  • FENS offers 4 stipends (covering the registration fee) available for candidates from disadvantaged countries. Any applicant in need of a grant should however first try to request it from the lab, institution or government if possible. You can apply for a stipend inside the application form. 


Universitätszentrum Obergurgl, Austria


For enquiries, please contact:



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The students' perspective

The students who attended the FENS-SfN Summer School 2015 on Shared mechanisms and specifity in neurodegenerative diseases (7-13 June 2015, Bertinoro, Italy), tell you about their experience:

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