Thomas Metzinger

Thomas Metzinger (*1958 in Frankfurt am Main, Germany) is currently Professor of Theoretical Philosophy at the Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz and an Adjunct Fellow at the Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Study (FIAS). He is also Director of the Neuroethics Research Unit in Mainz and Director of the MIND Group at the FIAS. Metzinger is past president of the German Cognitive Science Society (2005-2007) and of the Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness (2009-2011). His focus of research lies in analytical philosophy of mind and cognitive science, as well as in connections between ethics, philosophy of mind and anthropology; he received a number of awards and Fellowships (see below), the last one being a 5-year GRC Fellowship by the Gutenberg Research College (2014-2019). In the English language, he has edited two collections on consciousness (“Conscious Experience”, Paderborn: mentis & Thorverton, UK: Imprint Academic, 1995; “Neural Correlates of Consciousness”, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2000) and published one major scientific monograph developing a comprehensive, interdisciplinary theory about consciousness, the phenomenal self, and the first-person perspective (“Being No One – The Self-Model Theory of Subjectivity”, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2003). In 2009, he published a popular book, which addresses a wider audience and also discusses the ethical, cultural and social consequences of consciousness research (“The Ego Tunnel – The Science of the Mind and the Myth of the Self”, New York: Basic Books). A revised and greatly expanded German edition has appeared in 2014. An important recent Open Access collection (2015) is Open MIND at

Free Will, Hallucinated Agency, and Anarchic Robot Syndrome

Does something like “The Will” exist at all? What is it? I will look at the classical philosophical problem of free will by taking modern neuroscience and latest experiments investigating virtual embodiment in avatars and robots into account.