The Functional Role of Critical Dynamics in Neural Systems

Springer Series on Bio- and Neurosystems 11

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ISBN/EAN: 9783030209674
Sprache: Englisch
Umfang: XX, 287 S., 23 s/w Illustr., 99 farbige Illustr.,
Auflage: 1. Auflage 2019
Einband: kartoniertes Buch


This book offers a timely overview of theories and methods developed by an authoritative group of researchers to understand the link between criticality and brain functioning. Cortical information processing in particular and brain function in general rely heavily on the collective dynamics of neurons and networks distributed over many brain areas. A key concept for characterizing and understanding brain dynamics is the idea that networks operate near a critical state, which offers several potential benefits for computation and information processing. However, there is still a large gap between research on criticality and understanding brain function. For example, cortical networks are not homogeneous but highly structured, they are not in a state of spontaneous activation but strongly driven by changing external stimuli, and they process information with respect to behavioral goals. So far the questions relating to how critical dynamics may support computation in this complex setting, and whether they can outperform other information processing schemes remain open. Based on the workshop "Dynamical Network States, Criticality and Cortical Function", held in March 2017 at the Hanse Institute for Advanced Studies (HWK) in Delmenhorst, Germany, the book provides readers with extensive information on these topics, as well as tools and ideas to answer the above-mentioned questions. It is meant for physicists, computational and systems neuroscientists, and biologists.

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