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Psychonomic Society Leading Edge Workshops
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Psychonomic Society Leading Edge Workshops advance knowledge and understanding by bringing together senior scientists and early career investigators to examine the most innovative cognitive science. The main applicant must be a Member, Fellow or Emeritus member of the Society with annual funding available, up to $50,000 USD.

Proposals are now being accepted for 2018.

The following are descriptions of the first two Psychonomic Society Leading Edge Workshops.


2016 Leading Edge Workshop
The Evolutionary and Psychological Significance of Play
In honor of Stanley A. Kuczaj, II

Although members of a myriad array of species play, all play is not the same.  Species that play differ in terms of the forms and functions of their play and so it is possible that the evolutionary benefits of play vary from species to species. If so, is it the case that the evolutionary significance of play varies systematically, with additional benefits being added as species increase in cognitive or social complexity? Or are the benefits of play distributed more equally across the animal kingdom? Answers to these questions are necessary in order to determine the general evolutionary significance of play as well as its unique benefits for individual species.

Preliminary proposals for a special issue of Learning & Behavior on this topic are being accepted through November 1, 2016.

Organized by Lance Miller, Chicago Zoological Society - Brookfield Zoo, and Alex de Voogt, American Museum of Natural History in New York


2015 Leading Edge Workshop
The Process of Explanation
Explanations are crucial to our cognitive lives because they supply understanding of the world, without which none of the technological and scientific achievements of our species would have been possible. Yet, despite the importance and ubiquity of explanations, contemporary cognitive science has relatively little to tell us about the processes that underlie these judgments: How do people actually come up with explanations? Answering this question is no small feat, however, since a complete specification of these processes requires expertise in multiple areas of cognition: memory search and retrieval, reasoning and problem-solving, causal cognition, cognitive development, and so on.

 Organized by Andrei Cimpian, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


Call for Proposals
2018 Leading 
Edge Workshop 
Sponsored by the 
Psychonomic Society 

Initial proposals (max 500 words) accepted January 16 through April 30, 2017.

Selected applicants will then be invited to submit full proposals on or before September 8, 2017. A final funding decision will be made by the Governing Board during their meeting at Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada on November 8, 2017.

It is anticipated that one workshop will be funded in this first year of the scheme, with the workshop scheduled to take place in 2018.

2424 American Lane • Madison, WI 53704-3102 USA
Phone: +1 608-441-1070 • Fax: +1 608-443-2474 • Email:

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