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Professor Ruth Byrne

Professor of Cognitive Science (Psychology)

Professor of Cognitive Science (Trinity Inst. of Neurosciences (TCIN))

Ruth Byrne is the Professor of Cognitive Science at Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin, in the School of Psychology and the Institute of Neuroscience, a chair created for her by the university in 2005. Her research expertise is in the cognitive science of human thinking, including experimental and computational investigations of reasoning and imaginative thought. She has published over 100 articles in journals and her books include, 'The rational imagination: how people create alternatives to reality' (2005, MIT press), 'Deduction', co-authored with Phil Johnson-Laird (1991, Erlbaum Associates), and most recently, 'Thinking, reasoning, and decision-making in autism', co-edited with Kinga Morsanyi (2019, Routledge). She is the former Vice Provost of Trinity College Dublin (the 68th Vice Provost since the university was established in 1592; the first was Henry Ussher in 1594). Prior to that she was the head of the School of Psychology, and she has also served as deputy director of the Institute of Neuroscience. She is a senior editor for Cognitive Science, journal of the US Cognitive Science Society, and former chair of the European Research Council's advanced grants panel on the human mind. She currently teaches a foundation module on Thinking to first and second year undergraduates, and advanced modules on Human Reasoning, and Creative Cognition, to third and fourth year undergraduates. She supervises final year project students and postgraduate students carrying out research on thinking, reasoning, and imagination. Her BA degree was awarded by University College Dublin in 1983 and she completed her PhD at Trinity College Dublin in 1986. She subsequently worked as a postdoctoral researcher at the MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit in Cambridge, and as a lecturer in the psychology department at the University of Wales at Cardiff, and in the computer science department at University College Dublin. She is a member of the Royal Irish Academy, a Senior Fellow of Trinity College Dublin, and a Fellow of the US Association for Psychological Science. She was awarded the 2021 Gold Medal for Social Sciences by the Royal Irish Academy.
  COUNTERFACTUAL THINKING   Imagination and Creativity   moral judgment   Thinking and Reasoning
Dai, X., Keane, M.T., Shalloo, L., Ruelle, E., & Byrne, R.M.J., Counterfactual explanations for prediction and diagnosis in XAI., Proceedings of the 5th AAAI/ACM conference on Artificial Intelligence, Ethics, & Society, AIES'22, edited by Conitzer, V. & Tasioulas, J. , Association for Computing Machinery, 2022, pp215 - 226, Notes: [ ], Conference Paper, PUBLISHED  DOI
Tepe, B., & Byrne, R. M. J., Cognitive processes in imaginative moral shifts: How judgments of morally unacceptable actions change., Memory & Cognition, 50, 2022, p1103 - 1123, Journal Article, PUBLISHED
Conditional and counterfactual reasoning. in, editor(s)Knauff, M., & Spohn, W. , Handbook of Rationality., Cambridge, MA., MIT Press., 2021, pp405 - 418, [Byrne, R. M.J. & Espino, O.], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED
Espino, O., & Byrne, R. M. J., How people keep track of what is real and what is imagined: the epistemic status of counterfactual alternatives to reality, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition. , 47, (4), 2021, p547 - 570, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Pighin, S., Byrne, R. M., & Tentori, K. , "If only" counterfactual thoughts about cooperative and uncooperative decisions in social dilemmas. , Thinking & Reasoning, 2021, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Orenes, I., Espino, O., & Byrne, R. M.J., Similarities and Differences in Understanding Negative and Affirmative Counterfactuals and Causal Assertions: Evidence from Eye-Tracking., Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology., 75, (4), 2021, p633 - 651, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Morsanyi, K. & Byrne, R.M.J. , Thinking, reasoning, and decision-making in autism., 1, London, Routledge, 2020, 1 - 162pp, Book, PUBLISHED
Counterfactual and false-belief reasoning in individuals with autism. in, editor(s)K. Morsanyi & R.M.J. Byrne , Thinking, reasoning, and decision-making in autism., London, Routledge, 2020, pp88 - 112, [Rasga, C., Quelhas, A.C. & Byrne, R.M.J.], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED
How do individuals with autism think? in, editor(s)Morsanyi, K. & Byrne, R.M.J. , Thinking, reasoning, and decision-making in autism. , London, Routledge, 2020, pp1 - 12, [Morsanyi, K. & Byrne, R.M.J. ], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED
The Counterfactual Imagination: The Impact of Alternatives to Reality on Morality in, editor(s)A. Abraham , Cambridge Handbook of the Imagination, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2020, pp529 - 547, [Byrne, R.M.J.], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED

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