Pim Haselager

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Willem F.G. "Pim" Haselager
Residence Amsterdam / Groesbeek
Nationality Dutch
Fields Cognitive Science
Institutions Radboud University Nijmegen
Known for Frame problem, Embodied Embedded Cognition

Willem F.G. "Pim" Haselager (born 14 August 1960, Haarlem) is a Dutch philosopher-researcher in the philosophy of cognitive science. In the Netherlands he is part of a growing minority of scientists and philosophers advocating an embodied embedded perspective on cognition and intelligent behavior. Pim lives in Groesbeek and Amsterdam, the Netherlands. He holds a position at the Radboud University in Nijmegen.

Life and work[edit]

Haselager obtained a MA degree in philosophy and psychology. He obtained a PhD degree in 1995 at the Free University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. He is particularly interested in the integration of empirical work (i.e. psychological experiments, brain imaging, computational modeling, and robotics) with philosophical issues regarding knowledge and intelligent behavior.

He analyzed the debate between proponents of classical cognitive science and connectionism on the nature of representation, in relation to the inability of computational models to deal with the frame problem, which is related to common sense behavior, knowledge and reasoning. He examined the consequences of this debate for the status of folk psychology.

More recently he extended his research by investigating the embodied embeddedness of cognition (EEC) in relation to dynamical systems theory (DST). According to Haselager, both EEC and DST sharpen the debate on the role of representations in cognitive science. Currently he investigates the question of how far one can push non-representational ways of modeling intelligent behavior, experimentally and through robot simulations


  • Haselager, W.F.G. (1997). Cognitive science and folk psychology: The right frame of mind. London: Sage.
Articles, a selection
  • Haselager, W.F.G., & Van Rappard, J.F.H. (1998). Connectionism, systematicity, and the frame problem. Minds and Machines, 8 (2), 161-179.
  • Haselager, W.F.G. (1999). Neurodynamics and the revival of associationism in cognitive science. In A. Riegler, M. Peschl, & A. Von Stein (Eds.), Understanding representation in the cognitive sciences: Does representation need reality? (pp. 115–120). New York: Kluwer Academic / Plenum Publ.
  • Haselager, W.F.G. (1999). On the potential of non-classical constituency. Acta Analytica, 22, 23-42.
  • van Rooij, I., Bongers, R.M., & Haselager, W.F.G. (2002). A non-representational approach to imagined action. Cognitive Science, 26(3), 345-375.
  • Haselager, W.F.G., Bongers, R.M. & van Rooij, I. (2003). Cognitive science, representations and dynamical systems theory. In W. Tschacher and J-P. Dauwalder (Eds.) The dynamical systems approach to cognition: Concepts and empirical paradigms based on self-organization, embodiment, and coordination Dynamics. Studies of Nonlinear Phenomena in Life Science - Vol. 10. (pp. 229–242). Singapore: World Scientific.
  • Willems, D.J.M. & Haselager, W.F.G. (2003). Cooperative behavior in simulated reactive robots. In T. Heskes, P. Lucas, L. Vuurpijl, W. Wiegerinck (Eds). Proceedings of the 15th Belgium-Netherlands Conference on Artificial Intelligence (BNAIC). (pp. 355–362). Nijmegen: University of Nijmegen.
  • Frank, S.L., & Haselager, W.F.G. (2006). Robust semantic systematicity and distributed representations in a connectionist model of sentence comprehension. In: R. Sun & N. Miyake (Eds.), Proceedings of the 28th annual conference of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 226–231), Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.

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