Change of intention in “picking” situations

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Cases in which an agent has to select between alternatives that make no difference to him/her are termed picking type selections. This chapter analyzes the mechanism that makes a picking selection possible at all. The basic approach is that although on a cognitive level there is symmetry between the alternatives, on a lower causal level the symmetry does not maintain. To understand the nature of neuronal asymmetry in picking cases a masked priming paradigm was employed while recording EEG. This revealed a complex and dynamical “change of intention” phenomenon as part of the picking selection process. This chapter proposes a dynamical large-scale neural-network model for such picking scenarios. The mechanism suggested by the model captures each decision process, whether or not the agent is indifferent to the alternatives, as interplay between biases and a continuous random inner state noise.
Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationSurrounding Free Will
Subtitle of host publicationPhilosophy, Psychology, Neuroscience
EditorsAlfred R. Mele
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9780199393848, 0199393842
ISBN (Print)9780199333950, 0199333955
StatePublished - Nov 2014


  • beliefs
  • Causation
  • choices
  • control
  • Decisions
  • Determinism
  • Free will
  • folk concepts
  • intentions
  • moral responsibility


Dive into the research topics of 'Change of intention in “picking” situations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this