Alison Gopnik is a leader in the study of cognitive science and of children’s learning and development. She was one of the founders of the field of “theory of mind”, an originator of the “theory theory” of children’s development and introduced the idea that probabilistic models and Bayesian inference could be applied to children’s learning. In her most recent research she combines idea about “life history” in evolutionary biology and about explore/exploit tensions in AI to explain how children think and learn.
- Elected Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences 2013.
- Elected Fellow of the Cognitive Science Society 2014.
- Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science 2017.
- Guggenheim Fellowship 2020, Association for Psychological Science William James Life-Time Achievement Award for Basic Science 2022
- A. Gopnik, C. Glymour, D. Sobel, L. Schulz, T. Kushnir, & D. Danks (2004). A theory of causal learning in children: Causal maps and Bayes nets. Psychological Review, 111, 1, 1-31.
- A. Gopnik, O’Grady, S., Lucas, C. G., Griffiths, T. L., Wente, A., Bridgers, S., Aboody, R., Fung. H & Dahl, R. E. (2017). Changes in cognitive flexibility and hypothesis search across human life history from childhood to adolescence to adulthood. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 114(30), 7892-7899.
- A. Gopnik. (2020). Childhood as a solution to explore-exploit tensions Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society (B). DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2019.0502
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