Can social interaction constitute socialcognition?

Hanne De Jaegher
Ezequiel Di Paolo
and Shaun Gallagher


An important shift is taking place in social cognition
research, away from a focus on the individual mind
and toward embodied and participatory aspects of social
understanding. Empirical results already imply that
social cognition is not reducible to the workings of
individual cognitive mechanisms. To galvanize this interactive
turn, we provide an operational definition of social
interaction and distinguish the different explanatory
roles – contextual, enabling and constitutive – it can play
in social cognition. We show that interactive processes
are more than a context for social cognition: they can
complement and even replace individual mechanisms.
This new explanatory power of social interaction can
push the field forward by expanding the possibilities of
scientific explanation beyond the individual.

Read the paper here

Posted in Ideas and Papers.

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