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Antony Dickinson"Associative theories of goal-directed behaviour: a case for animal-human translational models"

Abstract :

The concept of goal-directed behaviour refers to those actions that are mediated by the interaction between knowledge of the action-outcome contingency and the current incentive value of the outcome.
Over the last decade or so, procedures developed within the field of animal learning have been increasingly used to investigate human goal-directed behaviour. Studies using the outcome revaluation procedures have shown that the capacity for goal-directed action develops during the third of life and depends upon the functioning of the ventro-medial prefrontal cortex. Furthermore, transfer of control and biconditional discriminations procedures have yielded evidence for the role of ideo-motor processes in human goal-directed action. Taken together, this research has demonstrated a commonality between basic decision and action selection processes in humans and other animals.

Selected publications

Choice and contingency in the development of behavioral autonomy during instrumental conditioning. Kosaki Y, Dickinson A. J Exp Psychol Anim Behav Process. 2010 Jul;36(3):334-42.

Pelloux, Y., Everitt, B. J., & Dickinson, A. (2007). Compulsive drug seeking by rats under punishment: effects of drug taking history. Psychopharmacology, 194, 127-137.

Valentin, V. V., Dickinson, A., & O'Doherty, J. P. (2007). Determining the Neural Substrates of Goal-Directed Learning in the Human Brain. Journal of Neuroscience, 27, 4019-4026.

Etienne Coutureau du CNIC