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Neuronale Koordination
Forschungsschwerpunkt Frankfurt

Schleusenweg 2-16
D-60528 Frankfurt am Main

Tel.: +49 (0) 69 / 6301 5739
Fax: +49 (0) 69 / 6301 4498

Events - NeFF-Workshop on Non-linear and model-free Interdependence Measures in Neuroscience and TRENTOOL course

April 26th/27th, MEG Unit, Brain Imaging Center, Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany


  • Michael Wibral, BIC, Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany
  • Raul Vicente, FIAS, Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany
  • Joseph T. Lizier, Max Planck Institute for Mathematics in the Sciences, Leipzig, Germany

This symposium is kindly supported by the NeFF-LOEWE Grant 'Neuronal Coordination - Research Group Frankfurt”

Understanding complex systems composed of many interacting units, such as neural networks, means understanding their directed and causal interactions. If the units in question interact in a nonlinear way, as it can be assumed in neural networks, we are faced with the problem that the analysis of interactions must be blind to the type of interaction if we want to cover all possible interactions in the network, as we may not know the type of nonlinear interaction a priori. Prematurely limiting our search to specific models, nonlinearities or, even worse, linear interactions may block the road to discovery. Novel model-free techniques for the quantification of directed interactions from information theory offer a promising alternative to more traditional methods in the field of interaction analyses, but also come with their own specific challenges. This symposium brings together the most active researchers in the field to discuss the state of the art, future prospects and challenges on the way to an model-free, information theoretic assessment of neuronal directed interactions.

TRENTOOL ( is a recently published MATLAB® toolbox for the model-free analysis of directed interactions in neural time series. As indicated in the schedule below, participants of the symposium will have the opportunity to get a hands on tutorial in the use of TRENTOOL on the two afternoons of the symposium (limited places!).

For registration, please send an email to . Registration fee will be 50.00EUR, payable upon acceptance of your registration via bank transfer to

Account holder: Universitätsklikum Frankfurt am Main
IBAN: DE32 5005 0201 0000 3799 99
IMPORTNANT: Please add “Drittmittelkonto: 8204689” as reference

Please note, that there are limited places for both symposium attendance and course participation.

Program and speakers:

Day 1

Time Speaker Title
09:00 - 09:30 Opening Talk: Michael Wibral / Raul Vicente, MEG Unit, Brain Imaging Center, Frankfurt, Germany Investigating the function of an information processing system with information theoretic methods – current prospects and challenges
09:30 - 10:10 Andre Bastos, Ernst Strüngmann Institute Frankfurt, Germany Title to be announced
10:10 - 10:50 Joseph Lizier, Max Planck Institute for Mathematics in the Sciences, Leipzig, Germany Multivariate construction of effective computational networks from observational data
10:50 - 11:10 Coffee break  
11:10 - 11:40 Stefano Panzeri, Italian Institute of Technology Department of Robotics, Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Genova, Italy Title to be announced
11:40 – 12:20 Luca Faes, Biophysics and Biosignals Lab, University of Trento, Italy Computing Transfer Entropy in neurophysiological time series: an approach based on efficient conditional entropy estimation
12:20 - 14:00 Lunch break  
14:00 - 15:30 Discussion: On the way to multivariate TE and methods for nonstationary data  
15:30 - 16:00 Tim Mullen, Dept. Cognitive Science, University of California, San Diego, USA Title to be announced
16:00 - 19:30 TRENTOOL workshop (@ MEG Laboratory)  
20:00 Dinner together (complimentary for speakers, but room enough for all)  

Day 2

Time Speaker Titel
09:30 - 10:10 Vasily Vakorin,Baycrest Centre, Rotman Research Institute of Baycrest, Toronto, Canada Age-related changes in local and distributed entropy of brain signals with brain development and aging
10:10 - 10:50 Mikhail Prokopenko, CSIRO ICT Centre, Sydney, Australia Fisher information and phase transitions in complex systems
10:50 – 11:10 Coffee break  
11:10 - 11:40 Paul Williams, Cognitive Science Program, Indiana University, Bloomington, USA Decomposing Multivariate Information
11:40 - 12:20 Daniel Chicharro, Italian Institute of Technology Department of Robotics, Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Genova, Italy An information-theoretic framework to study dynamic dependencies in networks of interacting processes.
12:20 - 14:00 Lunch break  
14:00 - 14:40 Ingo Fischer, Institute for Cross-Disciplinary Physics and Complex Systems, University of the Balearic Islands, Palma de Mallorca, Spain Title to be announced
14:40 - 16:00 Discussion: Information Dynamics - beyond connectivity  
16:00 - 19:30 TRENTOOL workshop (@ MEG Laboratory)