Robert P Erickson

Robert P Erickson

Professor Emeritus of Psychology: Experimental

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., Brown University 1958


My continuing interest has been in the representation of information by the nervous system. My general position was originally put forth in the 60s, a population approach related to present distributed function ideas. In recent publications the strong relationship of this approach to fuzzy logic has become evident, and fuzzy logic has strengthened the relevance of this approach to neural function.
In single neuron studies of taste and other sensory systems it is clear that information resides in ensembles of activity across neurons. Individual neurons per se do not have exactly specifiable functions but participate in various degrees in several functions, and various neural functions do not have exactly specifiable neural substrates but may involve the same or different neural populations to various degrees.
We are presently working on the mathematics of neural coding, such as the neural masses required, and the grades of participation of neurons in various codes (fuzzy sets).

Erickson, RP. "A study of the science of taste: on the origins and influence of the core ideas." Behav Brain Sci 31.1 (February 2008): 59-75. Full Text

Erickson, RP. "The evolution and implications of population and modular neural coding ideas." Progress in brain research 130 (January 2001): 9-29. (Review) Full Text

Selected Grants

Chemical Responses fo Oral Trigeminal Nerves awarded by National Institutes of Health (Co Investigator). 1991 to 2000

Chemical Responses Of Oral Trigeminal Nerves awarded by National Institutes of Health (Co-Principal Investigator). 1996 to 1999