Prof. David Poeppel, PhD

Main research areas

  • Brain basis of speech perception and language comprehension
  • Auditory cognition and music
  • Multisensory perception
  • The temporal structure of perceptual experience
  • Cognitive neuroscience and its foundations


Academic Education

1990-1995      PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1987-1990      Bachelor of Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1984-1986      Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine
1974-1984      Maximiliansgymnasium, München, Germany


Since 2014Director at the Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics
Since 2009Professor, Department of Psychology, NYU
2006-2009Professor, University of Maryland, College Park
2004 (fall)DaimlerChrysler Berlin Prize, American Academy Berlin
2003-2004Fellow, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (Institute for Advanced Studies)
2003-2005Associate Professor, University of Maryland, College Park
11/2001-2005Visiting Professor, Kanazawa Institute of Technology, Kanazawa, Japan
1998-2002Assistant Professor, Department of Linguistics & Department of Biology, University of Maryland, College Park
08/1995-12/1997Post-Doc, Department of Radiology, UCSF School of Medicine


Selected publications

Boemio, A., Fromm, S., Braun, A., & Poeppel, D. (2005). Hierarchical and asymmetric temporal sensitivity in human auditory cortices. Nature Neuroscience, 8(3), 389-395. doi: 10.1038/nn1409

van Wassenhove, V., Grant, K. W., & Poeppel, D. (2005). Visual speech speeds up the neural processing of auditory speech. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 102(4), 1181-1186. doi: 10.1073/pnas.0408949102

Hickok, G., & Poeppel, D. (2007). The cortical organization of speech processing. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 8(5), 393-402. doi: 10.1038/nrn2113

Luo, H., & Poeppel, D. (2007). Phase patterns of neuronal responses reliably discriminate speech in human auditory cortex. Neuron, 54(6), 1001-1010. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2007.06.004

Lau, E. F., Phillips, C., & Poeppel, D. (2008). A cortical network for semantics: (de)constructing the N400. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 9(12), 920-933. doi: 10.1038/nrn2532

Giraud, A. L., & Poeppel, D. (2012). Cortical oscillations and speech processing: emerging computational principles and operations. Nature Neuroscience, 15(4), 511-517. doi: 10.1038/nn.3063

Luo, H., Tian, X., Song, K., Zhou, K., & Poeppel, D. (2013). Neural response phase tracks how listeners learn new acoustic representations. Current Biology, 23(11), 968-974. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2013.04.031

Poeppel, D. (2014). The neuroanatomic and neurophysiological infrastructure for speech and language. Current Opinion in Neurobiology, 28c, 142-149. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2014.07.005

Overath, T., McDermott, J. H., Zarate, J. M., & Poeppel, D. (2015). The cortical analysis of speech-specific temporal structure revealed by responses to sound quilts. Nature Neuroscience, 18(6), 903-11. doi: 10.1038/nn.4021

Farbood M. M., Rowland J., Marcus G., Ghitza O. & Poeppel D. (2015). Decoding time for the identification of musical key. Attention Perception Psychophyics, 77(1):28-35. doi: 10.3758/s13414-014-0806-0. PMID: 25487869.

Embick D. & Poeppel D. (2015). Towards a computational(ist) neurobiology of language: Correlational, integrated, and explanatory neurolinguistics. Language, Cognition and Neuroscience, 30(4):357-366. PMID: 25914888

Rimmele, J. M., Zion Golumbic, E., Schröger, E., & Poeppel, D. (2015). The effects of selective attention and

speech acoustics on neural speech-tracking in a multi-talker scene. Cortex, 68(0), 144-154. doi: 10.1016/j.cortex.2014.12.014

Arnal, L. H., Flinker, A., Kleinschmidt, A., Giraud, A.-L., & Poeppel, D. (2015). Human Screams Occupy a

Privileged Niche in the Communication Soundscape. Current Biology. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2015.06.043

Awards & Grants

Awards & Grants

2004DaimlerChrysler Berlin Prize, American Academy
2003-2004Fellow, Institute for Advanced Studies, Berlin (Wissenschaftskolleg)
2006Cognitive Science Distinguished Lectureship, Michigan State Univ.
2006, MayGuest Professorship, École Normale Supérieure, Paris
2007Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science