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Max Planck Society awards Otto Hahn Medal to Dr. Jakob Macke

June 18, 2012 - BCCN

The new Junior Research Group Leader of the Bernstein Center Jakob Macke received the prestigious Otto Hahn Medal of the Max Planck Society for his dissertation at the Max Planck Institut for Biological Cybernetics.

Jakob Macke, who joined the BCCN Tübingen as Junior Research Group Leader in May 2012, received an Otto Hahn Medal of the Max Planck Society in recognition of his outstanding doctoral thesis entitled "Population coding in the visual system: Statistical methods and theory".  Dr. Macke studied Mathematics at Oxford University before performing his graduate research under the supervision of Prof. Matthias Bethge at the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics in Tübingen.  In his graduate research, he developed  a mathematical analysis which provides a deeper understanding of the statistical structure of activity pattern of large neural populations, and explained several seemingly contradicting experimental observations  based on multi-cell recordings of neural activity.

After his PhD, Jakob Macke worked together with Dr. Maneesh Sahani at the Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit, University College London, as a Marie Curie Fellow and developed new data analysis techniques for unravelling the influence of the intrinsic cortical dynamics on neural coding. He recently  establish the group "Neural Computation and Behaviour"  at the Bernstein Center for Computational Neuroscience Tübingen and the Max Planck Institut for Biological Cybernetics.  The goal of the group is to obtain a better understanding of how internal states influence neural information processing and observed behaviour.  To this end, the group will develop statistical methods for modelling measurements of neural activity and behaviour, and will collaborate closely with experimental laboratories at the Center.

The Max Planck Society has honoured up to 30 young scientists and researchers each year with the Otto Hahn Medal for outstanding scientific achievements since 1978. The award comes with a monetary sum of 7500 euros as recognition, and was conferred at the Annual General Assembly of the Max Planck Society in Düsseldorf on June 13, 2012.


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