Affective Grounding of Sense of Agency and Action Regulation (AffAct)

Sense of agency, the feeling of being in control of one’s actions and their perceivable results in the environment, is crucial in constructing a sense of self (Gentsch & Schütz-Bosbach, 2015; Haggard, 2017). Agency is most relevant during goal-directed behavior and has been proposed to be fundamentally bound to the processing of affective information (Gentsch & Synofzik, 2014; Ly, Wang, Bhanji, & Delgado, 2019). Moreover, experimental work on the relation of agency experience and action regulation indicates that affective processing might represent a core mechanism that mediates the influence from sense of agency to objective action regulation (Legault & Inzlicht, 2013; Murayama et al., 2015). Despite the evidence for the potentially important relation of sense of agency and affective processing, most experimental research so far studied agency in non-affective contexts. The current project shall extent previous work on sense of agency, affective processing, and action regulation to investigate how sense of agency modulates the processing of affective feedback, how agency-related changes in affective processing influence our ability to self-regulate behavior, and under which circumstances affective information determines the emergence of agency experience. Answering these questions will contribute to the DFG Priority Program “The Active Self”, by elucidating affective processing as one potential core mechanism underlying the sense of self during goal-directed actions.

PIs: Prof. Dr. Simone Schütz-Bosbach, Dr. Jakob Kaiser

PhD: Maren Giersiepen