The Toulouse Mind & Brain Institute (TMBI) brings together a very wide range of researchers in the Toulouse area, all interested in aspects of Cognition and Behavior.
In French, the title is “Institut des Sciences du Cerveau, de la Cognition et du Comportement” (ISC3T).
The Institute dates back to 2000, when a group of 5 laboratoires joined together to form the ISCT (Institut des Sciences du Cerveau de Toulouse) under the direction of Professor Jean-Luc Nespoulous, a Neuropsycholinguist working at the Jacques-Lordat Laboratory at Université Toulouse Mirail (as it was then called).
It became the IFR96 (Institut Féderative de Recherche) and for many years was directed by Professor François Chollet from the INSERM Unit U825 and his Deputy Yves Trotter, a CNRS Research Director from the CerCo (Brain and Cognition Research Center).
The ISCT played a key role in the development of a major project to renovate the Pavillon Baudot, located on the Purpan Hospital site, and two major laboratories were able to move into the new premises in 2011.
In January 2016, the position of director was taken over by Simon Thorpe who is also the director of the CerCo, with Professor Jérémie Pariente from INSERM Tonic as deputy.
Two other Brain related initiatives have also just started in Toulouse at the start of 2016. First, there is an FHU (Fédération Hospitalo-Universitaire) called HoPeS that is building a consortium to work on Cognitive, Psychiatric and Sensory Handicaps. This structure, with a budget of roughly €100 K per year for three years, is being led by Jérémie Pariente and Professor Christophe Arbus.
Second, there is a new initiative in Neurodegenerative Disease called “NeuroToul” that is aimed at tackling three major health challenges – Parkson’s Disease, Alzheimer’s Disease and Multiple Sclerosis, all areas where Toulouse has a strong research community.
In March 2016, we learned that the ANR (Agence National de Recherche) was launching a call for proposals for “Instituts Convergences”, which will fund 5-10 major interdiscplinary research centres with a total budget of €30 million – enough to provide between 300 and 700 k€ per year for 10 years.
It was decided to use combine the forces of the ISC3T, HoPeS and NeuroToul to put together a highly interdisciplinary project under the banner of the Toulouse Mind & Brain Institute. It was this objective that led to the launch of this new website on the 23rd March 2016.
By pooling together the talent from 5 core laboratoires and several other partner labs and institutions, we hope to be able to put together an attractive project that could appeal to the International Review panel who will be evaluating the projects. The proposal, which needs to be written in English, has to be submitted before 11am on Thursday 21st April 2016.
We very much hope that all Toulouse based researchers interested in any aspect of Brain, Behavior and Cognition including the develoment of intelligent articial systems will be keen to join the project.
With best wishes
Simon Thorpe and Jérémie Pariente, on behalf of the scientific commitee of the TMBI.