Carnegie Mellon University
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Dr. Marlene Behrmann is a Professor of Psychology at Carnegie Mellon University, whose research specializes in the cognitive basis of visual perception, with a specific focus on object recognition. Widely considered to be a trailblazer and a worldwide leader in the field of visual cognition, she was inducted into the National Academy of Sciences in 2015 and into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2019.  

Below are some recent publications from the lab:


An expanded brain network for object recognition. In this schematic depiction of the visual system, the ventral pathway (V1 to ATL) acts much like a DNN (bottom) – extracting increasingly complex local object features, but not a complete shape. Instead, structural information describing the global shape of an object, but not its individual features (top; depicted as a red skeleton), may be computed in dorsal visual pathway regions such as IPS. This information is then sent to the ventral pathway to form a complete object representation. 



Example stimuli from the (A) object-centered part relations, (B) allocentric relations (C) depth, (D)and tool localizers used in Experiment 1.


Conjunction maps illustrating areas of distinct and overlapping coding for object-centered part-relations and (A) allocentric relations, (B) depth, and (C) tools. A value closer 1 indicates a greater response to part relations; a value closer to 0 indicates

Ayzenberg, V., & Behrmann, M. (2022). The dorsal visual pathway represents object-centered spatial relations for object recognition. Journal of Neuroscience. doi:


We strive to foster an inclusive and welcoming environment, where everyone feels respected and valued. I encourage individuals from under-represented minority groups, who may be interested in short-term projects, PhD programs, or postdoctoral training to reach out to me by email (behrmann [at] cmu [dot] edu) to discuss opportunities. 

The Psychology Department’s full Statement of Community Standards can be found here.