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Distinguished Lorentz Fellowship Talk by Henkjan Honing

On 17 April, NIAS and the Lorentz Center award the 2013/14 Distinguished Lorentz Fellowship (DLF) to Henkjan Honing. Honing, who is Professor of Music Cognition at the University of Amsterdam, will give a talk on the biological origins of musicality.


Talk “Music, Cognition, and the Origins of Musicality”

Henkjan Honing: “Although it has been argued that we will never know how cognitive traits evolved, I would like to explore the idea that we may know the evolution of music by investigating the fundamental cognitive mechanisms that make up musicality (e.g., relative pitch and beat induction). I will investigate whether a ‘bottom-up’ approach to the study of the evolution of complex cognitive processes, in which one looks for the basic mechanisms that combine into a complex cognitive trait – in our case musicality –, is an alternative and potentially fruitful way to proceed. Instead of asking which species are musical, the question becomes: how does musicality actually work? What are the necessary ingredients of musicality, and how did these evolve?”


About Henkjan Honing

Henkjan Honing (1959) holds a KNAW-Hendrik Muller chair in Music Cognition and is professor of Cognitive and Computational Musicology at both the Faculty of Humanities and the Faculty of Science of the University of Amsterdam (UvA). Honing has authored over 150 international publications, and  recently published a book for the general public entitled Musical Cognition: A Science of Listening (2011).


About the DLF Award

The Distinguished Lorentz Fellowship is awarded to a leading scientist working on cutting-edge research at the interface between the Humanities and/or Social Sciences on one hand and the Natural Sciences and/or Technology on the other. The award consists of a residential fellowship at NIAS, an international workshop at the Lorentz Center and a personal prize of €10,000.


Previous DLF’s

Henkjan Honing will follow in the footsteps of Jan van Leeuwen (2009), Richard Gill (2010), Johan Rooryck (2011) and the current DLF Henk Barendregt (2012).


About the Award Ceremony


16.00: Arrival, coffee and tea
16.30:  Welcome by Aafke Hulk, Rector of NIAS
16.35: Talk by Henkjan Honing “Music, Cognition, and the Origins of Musicality”
17.20: Presentation of the Distinguished Lorentz Fellowship Award by Alexander Rinnooy Kan, Chair of the NIAS-Lorentz Advisory Board
17.30 – 18.30: Reception

The Distinguished Lorentz Fellowship Award Ceremony is for invited guests only. It takes place in the Conference Building.


Our address is:
Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study
Meijboomlaan 1
Wassenaar, 2242 PR