Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

Brighton Science Festival

  • Ever wanted to swap bodies?

  • Have an out-of-body-like experience?

  • Or seamlessly swap ‘realities’ without moving anywhere?

These were just some of the experiences on offer at our VR showcase Being Somebody, which featured demonstrations at the cutting-edge of consciousness science and virtual reality. This event was part of the Brighton Science Festival and took place on Saturday 17th of February at the Sallis Benney Theatre.

Being Somebody explored how our brains create the feeling of having a body. Bringing research straight out of our lab that explores how our experience of the world is shaped by the body and how bodily-experience itself is actively constructed, moment-to-moment, by the brain.

The Sackler Centre is at the forefront of a multidisciplinary approach to understanding consciousness and developing new approaches to diagnosing and treating psychiatric disorders. One of our primary goals is to understand the role of the body in experiences of selfhood, and of the external world, by combining innovative virtual reality with psychophysics and physiology. Our research examines how experiences of being a self – just like experiences of the world around us – are active constructions that depend on the brain, body, and environment together. This creates a sense of wonder at our everyday experience of being a person, while shedding new light on a range of psychiatric and neurological disorders.


Being Somebody