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Wednesday, 5 pm CET, i.e, 11 am ET


Organized by David Hansel, Ran Darshan

& Carl van Vreeswijk (1962-2022) 

About Us

About the Seminar

VVTNS  is a weekly digital seminar on Zoom targeting the theoretical neuroscience community. Created as the World Wide Neuroscience Seminar (WWTNS) in November 2020 and renamed in homage to Carl van Vreeswijk in Memoriam (April 20, 2022), its aim is to be a platform to exchange ideas among theoreticians. Speakers have the occasion to talk about theoretical aspects of their work which cannot be discussed in a setting where the majority of the audience consists of experimentalists. The seminars  are 45 min long followed by a discussion and are held on Wednesdays at 11 am EDT. The talks are recorded with authorization of the speaker and are available to everybody on our YouTube channel.


To participate in the seminar you need to fill out a registration form after which you will

receive an email telling you how to connect.

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Tim O'Leary

University of Cambridge

April 17, 2024


Flip flops and toggles for effective decision making in neural circuits

Neural computation is inextricably bound to decisions that must be made under time pressure and uncertainty. At the level of neural circuits, single neurons need to decide whether to spike. On longer timescales, the component circuitry needs to decide whether to reconfigure to store memories and adapt to novel situations. In this talk I will focus on two fun ideas in each of these contexts by showing how nonlinearities in neural components naturally form excitable switches that enable reliable decisions to be made in fluctuating environments. I will also issue propaganda that the kind of high level, cognitive faculties that we normally associate with decision making apply equally well and are understudied at the level of neural and synaptic populations.



David Hansel

I am a theoretical neuroscientist at the National Center for Scientific Research in Paris, France and visiting professor at The Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel. I am mainly interested in the recurrent dynamics in the cortex and 

basal ganglia.

Carl van Vreeswijk *

I am a theoretical neuroscientist working at the National Center for Scientific Research in Paris, France. My main interest is the dynamics of recurrent networks of neurons in the sensory system.



Ran Darshan

 I am a theoretical neuroscientist working at the Faculty of Medicine, the Sagol School of Neuroscience & the School of Physics and Astronomy at Tel Aviv University, Israel. I am interested in learning and dynamics of neural networks. My main goal is to achieve a mechanistic understanding of brain functions.

©2020 by WWTNS

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