Katrin Heimann, PhD

Dr. Heimann, alumni of the German Academic Scholarship Foundation, conducted her PhD in Neuroscience at the University of Parma, Italy, as fellow of the integrated Marie-Curie ITN program TESIS (Towards an Embodied Science of InterSubjectivity). Her thesis focused on neurological responses to different elements of film style and the implications of these for spectators’ experiences. She was recruited by Aarhus University right after her PhD, became European based fellow at the Einstein Group "Consciousness, Emotions, Values" in Berlin in 2017 and is currently Assistant Professor at the Interacting Minds Centre. Here she is working with three thematical foci: art and media-experiences, with a continuous special interest on film and other (audio-)visual media, the experience of playfulness as an embodied state of mind as well as the experience of care and indifference regarding social and environmental injustice as a potential way to behavioral change.

Methodologically, she combines behavioral and physiological measurements as well as third person observational data with qualitative interview data that is acquired using micro-phenomenology - a guided introspection method designed to assess subjective experience. She is Associate Editor of Frontiers in Psychology, Section Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology.

Relevant (selected) publications

1.) Heimann, K., Fingerhut, J., et al (2019). Embodying the camera: An EEG study on the effect of camera movements on film spectators’ sensorimotor cortex activation. PlosOne, Accepted.

2.) Heimann, K., et al (2019). The influence of the context on facial expressions perception: a source localization high-density EEG study on the “Kuleshov effect”. Scientific reports, 9, 2107.

3.) Heimann, K., & Roepstorff, A. (2018). How playfulness motivates – putative looping effects of autonomy and surprise revealed by micro-phenomenological investigations. Frontiers in Psychology, Special Issue on Playfulness. Doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2018.01704

4.) Heimann, K., Roepsdorff, A., et al (2017). The effects of extreme rituals on moral behavior : The performers-observers gap hypothesis. Journal of Economic Psychology, Vol. 59, p. 1-7.

5.) Fingerhut, J. & Heimann, K. (2016). Movies and the mind. On our filmic body. in Embodiment, Enaction, and Culture. Investigating the Constitution of the Shared World (ed. Durt, C., Fuchs, T. & Tewes, C.), MIT Press, 353-377.

Relevant (selected) projects and activities

1.) Member of PLAYTrack, a 5-year collaboration research project (2016-2020) between the LEGO Foundation and the Interacting Minds Centre at the School of Culture and Society, Aarhus University. The purpose of this collaboration is to create a unique platform between academia and the private sector dedicated to developing a framework and methodology to conduct basic and applied research into the properties and mechanisms of playful learning experiences.

2.) “Experiencing, Experimenting, Reflecting” (2019-2024). A collaboration on the intersection of research practices and artistic practices between Interacting Minds Centre, and Studio Olafur Eliasson funded by the Carlsberg Foundation (2 mio €). The project is designed to tackle the current situation in which we are witnessing deep crises in trust and social cohesion. What information is trustworthy? What are facts? How do our perceptions and emotions contribute to what we think and how we act? How do we make sense of, navigate, and participate in society? Environmental and political challenges abound, and these can only be solved through collaboration and innovation – both technological and social. In response to this challenge, the project is set up to develop a strong dialogue between the arts and the sciences as two of the dominant creative forces in society today – a dialogue that embraces the responsibility that the freedom of thought and creativity entail.

3.) Teaching at the BA Program Multimedia Platform Storytelling at the applied University of Aarhus (VIA) and at the MA of Visual Anthropology.

4.) Collaboration with Andreas Lloyd, an anthropologist and political activist from Copenhagen on a project called “Climateers”.