What is episodic memory?

Perspectives from Philosophy, Psychology and Neuroscience

Mercator Research Group - Structure of Memory


Conference dates: November 29-30, 2016
Contact email address: mrg1@rub.de
Contact phone number: +49 (0) 234 32 26739
Submission page for Papers & Posters: https://easychair.org/conferences/?conf=epmem2016
Deadline to submit Papers & Posters:

Extended until October 15, 2016

Register to attend conference: mrg1@rub.de
Deadline for registration: November 15, 2016

Ruhr University Bochum

29. November: Veranstaltungszentrum directions

30. November: Mercator Seminar room directions




Tuesday, 29.11.2016

Venue: Veranstaltungszentrum


Registration + Welcome

10:00-10:15 Welcome address by Rector of the RUB Prof. Dr. Schölmerich


Katharina Henke (U Bern)

“Processing modes divide between memory systems”


Christoph Hoerl (U Warwick)

Remembering Past experiences”


Poster Session + Lunch Break


Magdalena Sauvage (Leibniz Institute for Neurobiology)

“Towards a functional Architecture of Memory”


Markus Werning (U Bochum)

“The Memory Trace: A Causal Link With or Without Representational Content?”


Coffee Break


 Sen Cheng (U Bochum)

“Memory, Space and Sequences in the Hippocampus”


Wednesday, 30.11.2016

Venue: Mercator Seminar Room GA 04/187


Edmund Rolls (Oxford)

“The hippocampus and episodic memory”


Kirk Michaelian (U Otago)

What is it to (successfully) remember an episode?“


Lunch Break


Ekrem Dere (MPI Göttingen)

“Mental Time Travel in Animals and Humans”


Martijn Meeter (U Amsterdam)

“Now even Newer: the role of novelty in learning and memory”


Coffee Break


4 Spotlight Talks à 17 minutes


Sven Bernecker (U Köln)

“Epistemic Benefits of Confabulation“



Call for Papers

What is episodic memory?

Closing Symposium

Bochum, November 29-30, 2016
Organization: Sen Cheng, Magdalena Sauvage, Markus Werning



Episodic memory is a critical part of the human mind and has frequently been claimed to be a cornerstone of personal identity. Yet, there is no universal consensus on what constitutes episodic memory. In many textbooks, the notion of episodic memory is introduced in a hierarchical taxonomical manner: First, a distinction between declarative and non-declarative memory (Squire & Zola-Morgan, 1988) is made. In a second step, two subordinate categories are introduced within the superordinate category of declarative memory, namely, semantic memory and episodic memory. Tulving (1972) introduced the what-where-when criterion to define the content of episodic memory. However, this criterion was found to be insufficient to distinguish semantic from episodic memories. As a result, Tulving (1985) later revised his definition of episodic memory and based it on autonoetic consciousness, the conscious reliving of a past experience. Suddendorf and Corballis (1997) went even further and suggested that episodic memory is linked to mental time travel into the past and facilitates mental time travel into the future. More recently, Cheng and Werning (2016) have focused on whether episodic memory is a natural kind and what implications this has for what episodic memory is best taken to be.

The symposium tries to formulate new answers on the nature of episodic memory and addresses an interdisciplinary audience of philosophers, psychologists, and empirical as well as theoretical neuroscientists. Abstracts for talks and posters are welcome.


- Sven Bernecker (U Cologne)
- Ekrem Dere (MPI Göttingen) "Mental Time Travel in Animals and Humans"
- Katharina Henke (U Bern) "Processing Modes divide between memory systems"
- Christoph Hoerl (U Warwick) "Remembering Past experiences"
- Martijn Meeter (U Amsterdam) "Now even Newer: the role of novelty in learning and memory"
- Kirk Michaelian (U Otago) "What is it to (successfully) remember an episode?"
- Edmund Rolls (U Oxford) "The hippocampus and episodic memory"


We invite authors to submit an anonymous one-page abstract by September 30, 2016 for a talk of 17 minutes (plus 3 minutes discussion). Submissions should be made via Easychair (