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Category Theory for Consciousness Science

— Workshop —

15 – 16 April, 2023, Oxford

Category theory has established itself as an important tool in the applied sciences, and recently approaches have emerged which apply category theory to the study of cognition and consciousness. This two day workshop aims to bring together researchers from a wide range of backgrounds who are interested in the application of formal methods and category theory in consciousness science.

The workshop will be highly interactive, involving group discussion sessions each day, along with invited and contributed talks, centered around the following key topics:

— Categorical models of consciousness
— Compositional approaches in cognitive science
— Categorification of frameworks for cognition and consciousness
— Categories of spaces of conscious experiences
— Formal treatments of problems of phenomenal consciousness

Confirmed Invited Speakers

— Professor Bob Coecke (Quantinuum, Chief Scientist)

— Professor Émérite Andrée Ehresmann* (Université de Picardie Jules Verne)

— Professor David Spivak* (Topos Institute)

— Professor Nao Tsuchiya (Monash University)

The talks marked with an asterisk (*) will be held online.

Where and when?

Please note the change of venue.

Date: Saturday, 15 April – Sunday, 16 April, 2023 

Place: Lecture Hall L3, Mathematical Institute, University of Oxford

Fee: Participation is free of charge, but registration is required.

Registration: Please register as described below.


Each day’s programme will consist of invited talks (45 mins), contributed talks (30 mins) and discussion sessions (1 hour each), dedicated to a specific question focused around the above topics. The schedule will be made available on this website closer to date.


The workshop schedule is available here.
Please check for updates shortly before the workshop!

Lunch Opportunities around the Mathematical Institute

Please see this map for lunch opportunities around the Mathematical Institute.

Travel and accommodation

The venue is located in central Oxford just a 10 minute walk from Oxford railway station. Coach services are available to Oxford from most London airports. The nearest international airport is London Heathrow, from which The Airline coach services offer shuttles at every half hour.


If you would like to attend the event, please register by email to with the following information:

— Full name, occupation and institution
— Main area of work and further areas of interest
— Any dietary requirements

Talk applications are closed since the deadline of March 8.

Financial Support

Limited funding is available to assist participants without institutional support. If you require financial support to attend, please indicate this in your application and specify the minimal amount required to make your attendance possible, separated by travel and accommodation expenses.


Johannes Kleiner, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich
Sean Tull, Quantinuum


This workshop is supported by grant number FQXi-RFP-CPW-2018, Categorical Theories of Consciousness: Bridging Neuroscience and Fundamental Physics, from the Foundational Questions Institute and Fetzer Franklin Fund, a donor advised fund of Silicon Valley Community Foundation.

We gratefully acknowledge support from:

In case of questions, please contact the organisers at