Applied Face Cognition Lab Logo
Applied Face Cognition Lab Logo

What we do

About the Lab

Our lab is interested in human visual cognition; particularly face processing. Our goal is to better understand the relationship between brain function and behavior. To this end, we use multiple neuroscientific methods to study inter-individual differences at various levels of face processing - from detection to identification. We seek to bridge the gap between empirical research and its application outside the lab in order to address outstanding questions and solve real-world problems.

The lab is funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation and led by Meike Ramon, who was awarded a PRIMA (Promoting Women in Academia) grant to investigate the Mechanisms of Superior Face Recognition. This interdisciplinary project involves a collaborative network between researchers and practitioners from international police agencies to study Super-Recognizers - individuals with exceptional face processing capacities.

Funding Body

Swiss National Science Foundation Logo

Current Host Institute

University of Lausanne Logo

Scientific Advisor To

Berlin Polizei Logo

Who We Are

Meet the Team

Meike Ramon
Lab Leader
Meike Ramon is an Assistant Professor and Swiss National Science Foundation PRIMA (Promoting Women in Academia) Fellow. She founded and leads the Applied Face Cognition Lab at the University of Lausanne. Her research focus is in Cognitive Neuroscience and its translation into application and policy. Other things Meike is involved in: Founding member of the 500 Women Scientists Bern/Fribourg - Advisor in Simply Neuroscience's Action Potential Advising Program - Associate Editor with Swiss Psychology Open, Guest Editor with Neuropsychologia - Local node leader of the Swiss Reproducibility Network. Meike is a Scientific Advisor for the Berlin State Office of Criminal Investigation. Together with the Berlin Police Center for Innovation Science Management, she co-developed the Berlin Test for Super-Recognizer Identification (beSure®), a bespoke tool involving authentic police material. Meike is a member of the European Association for Biometrics and an expert of the Europol Platform for Experts.
Andrea Fröhlich
PhD student
Andrea is a forensic phonetician and the group leader of the speech and audio group at the Zurich Forensic Science Institute (FOR). Previously, she worked on automatic speaker and speech recognition at several international institutions and companies (Oxford Wave Research, Spitch AG, Netherlands Forensic Institute, Bielefeld Dialogue Systems Group, University of Bielefeld). Andrea holds a MA from the faculty of computational linguistics at the University of Zürich. While most of her casework focuses on forensic speaker comparison and identification, her research interest lies in human and automatic processing of voices. Alongside her work at FOR, Andrea is pursuing a PhD and is keen on finding out if Super-Recognizers' ability for *facial* identity processing extends to the auditory domain and voices.
Jeff Nador
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Jeff uses pattern analyses of neural and psychophysical data to understand perceptual and conceptual representations of objects and tasks. When he’s not playing hockey or skiing, you’ll probably find him wondering about how tasks modify the neural representations of faces, natural scenes, playing cards, or simple Gabors. In the AFC lab, he’s developing data-driven approaches to capture Super-Recognizers’ uncanny abilities.
Maren Mayer
Postdoctoral Researcher
Maren Mayer finished her PhD at the University of Mannheim and the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences and Humanities, where she studied collaborative behavior and group decision making focusing on expert influences. Her research involves experimental examination as well as statistical modelling of collaborative behavior disentangeling various sources of influence on the group judgment. Maren has a bachelors's and a master's degree in psychology obtained at the University of Mannheim and was previously an associated member of the research training group "Statistical Modeling in Psychology". Since 2022 she is postdoctoral researcher at the Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien in Tübingen. In the AFC Lab, Maren is working on the question of whether Super-Recognizers can improve perpetrator identification from CCTV footage.
Neil Docherty
Software Engineer
Neil began a career in teaching after studying astrophysics at the University of Glasgow. When he moved to Switzerland, he became a software engineer. He builds software at the University of Bern's Institut für Medizinische Lehre as well as custom scientific platforms.
Lionel Boudry
Research Intern / Assistant
Lionel has recently finished his Bachelor's degree at the University of Fribourg, where he is currently pursuing a MA in Clinical Neurosciences. He is much interested in the bridge between clinical aspects of psychology and experimental research. He is currently finishing his research internship project on face recognition and the various factors influencing this process. From Nov '23 he will be assisting the AFC Lab's ongoing work. Besides his studies, Lionel likes Basketball, music and learning new things.
Jobila Eigenmann
Research Intern
Jobila studied psychology at the University of Stirling, where she found her interest in cognition. For her dissertation, she compared two versions of a holistic composite system. Through this, she received the opportunity to complete a research-based internship with the Zurich Cantonal Police, where she assisted in two studies surrounding face recognition. She is currently completing her Masters in Psychology and Neuroscience of Mental Health. At the AFC Lab, Jobila will be organizing the lab's talk series and working on a project to determine whether Super-Recogniziers’ superior ability for processing facial identity extends to faces of P.O.C. (people of color).
Lavazza
Honorary Fellow
Lavazza spends the majority of his time in quiet, focussed contemplation. We know not what he thinks about - but it's likely to be deeply profound. You can usually find him asleep on a keyboard.

AFC Lab Talk Series

Make Wednesdays* a little more interesting

We host a virtual talk series — now, typically on Wednesdays.

Our aim is to support early-career researchers and underrepresented groups by providing a platform for their work and increase opportunities for networking.

If you'd like to give a talk, drop us a message and we'll get it organised.

*Normally

NEXT TALK
Wednesday, 07 Dec 2022
16:00 CET
Title
How do visual abilities relate to each other?

Collaborations

The Applied Face Cognition Lab has a number of ongoing projects with a variety of international researchers and organisations.

Berlin Polizei
Rheinland-Pfalz Polizei
Police Cantonale Fribourg
Stadtpolizei Winterthur
Universität Giessen
University of Aberdeen
York University
MIT Media Lab
University of Glasgow
Friedrich Schiller University Jena
Forensisches Institut Zürich
Universität Zürich
Berlin School of Economics and Law