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At Mind Matters News: Consciousness experiments confirm each research group’s theories


And that’s frustrating because science advances by disconfirming some theories:

Human consciousness is by far the biggest mystery in the universe. We can be pretty sure that a researcher bold enough to claim to have found simple answer is mistaken. A recent study out of Tel Aviv University dramatically illustrates the problems we face. The researchers, focusing on the methods of study (methodological choices) that consciousness researchers belonging to various schools of thought chose, a computer program could predict with 80% accuracy what they would find.

That wasn’t supposed to happen …

The research analyzed 412 studies developed to test the four leading theories — Global Workspace Theory (GWT), Higher Order Thought Theory, Recurrent Processing Theory, and Integrated Information Theory (IIT).

“Each of these theories offers convincing experiments to support them, so the field is polarized, with no agreed-upon neuroscientific account of consciousness,” says Prof. Mudrik. – Tel-Aviv University, “The nature of consciousness experiments found to largely determine their results” at Medical Xpress(March 16, 2022)

News, “Consciousness experiments confirm each research group’s theories” at Mind Matters News

Takehome: In a study of studies, a computer program predicted the support each group would find based on the method of research it had chosen.

You can't run an experiment on a theory of consciousness. It's like trying to calibrate a yardstick by comparing it with the same yardstick. The best we can do with consciousness is look for external indicators like dreaming. polistra

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