Luca Bonatti

Universitat Pompeu Fabra

Social & Behavioural Sciences

I graduated in Philosophy at the University of Milan, Italy, and received my PhD in Philosophy of Mind at Rutgers, N.J.. I have been a member of the Laboratoire de Sciences Cognitives et Psycholinguistique, Paris, where I learned the little experimental psychology I know of, thanks to the help of friends and colleagues. I then entered the University of Paris 8, France as an associate professor. I moved to Italy at SISSA, Trieste, then to the University of Nantes, France, as a full professor, and finally to Barcelona, at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra, as an ICREA professor. I have also been visiting professor at the University of Budapest, Hungary, at the University of the Balearic Islands, Spain, and at New York University.

Research interests

I am fascinated by thinking, by the very fact that we conceive structured states of mind that can be true or false, that can be imaginary or real. I am fascinated by how pervasively thinking populates our mental life. We reason when we read, or when we speak, but also when we walk around, or when we dream. Indeed, thinking is at the roots of the unique cognitive place humans have in the animal kingdom. I investigate its early structure, finding ways to describe the potential primitives of the scaffoldings supporting the combinatorial structure of human thought. I try to reveal bits and pieces of the representations underlying our abilities to come to conclusions, to form expectations, or to find what happens next. When time allows, I also work on how infants and adults find linguistic structure in speech, and how we can pack so much conceptual information inside those tiny and odd bits of sounds that we call words.

Selected publications

– Cesana-Arlotti N, Martín A, Téglás E, Vorobyova L, Cetnarski R & Bonatti LL 2018, ‘Precursors of logical reasoning in preverbal human infants’, Science, 359, 6381, 1263 – +, aao3539.

Selected research activities

Selected Conferences

Jan 25, University of Maryland (MD), Cognitive Science Colloquium — Invited Speaker.

May 3, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris. Workshop on Numerical Cognition — Invited Speaker.

June 9-11 McDonnell Foundation Grant Plenary Workshop on The Logic of Quantification. Co-Organizer and Speaker.

June 12 McDonnell Foundation Grant Focused Seminar on  The ontogenesis of logic in grammar. Organizer and Speaker.