Barlow Receives $25,000 Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience
CHICAGO — The Society for Neuroscience (SfN) awarded the Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience to Horace Barlow, MBBCh, MD, ScD. Supported by The Swartz Foundation, this prize, which includes $25,000, recognizes an individual who has produced a significant cumulative contribution to theoretical models or computational methods in neuroscience. The award was presented during Neuroscience 2009, SfN’s annual meeting and the world’s largest source of emerging news on brain science and health.
“Dr. Barlow has been a pioneer in theoretical neuroscience and his contributions have provided a key foundation for today’s researchers,” said Thomas J. Carew, PhD, president of SfN. “We are pleased to be recognizing this prolific scientist.”
Barlow’s career spans more than 50 years, beginning in the 1950s with his novel observations on the response properties of visual neurons in frogs. Shortly thereafter, his quantitative studies helped to shape modern ideas regarding the interpretation of sensory representations within the brain. Namely, he found that sensations and perceptions result from the activity of just a few brain cells among many silent ones. His work implies that the activity of a single brain cell is an important perceptual event. He is currently studying the role of visual blur during motion and how it may inform perception of direction.
Dr. Barlow’s work has received multiple honors and awards, most recently the British Neuroscience Associate Award and the Ralph Gerard Prize. He is currently Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge.
The Society for Neuroscience is an organization of more than 39,000 researchers and clinicians who study the brain and nervous system.