CIMeC - Center for Mind/Brain Sciences


With my research I use functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and kinematics to study how we use and integrate the senses of vision and touch to perceive objects and guide actions. The fascinating aspect of hand actions is that we can perform a movement within a few hundred milliseconds from the moment we decide to move. Yet, in this very short time we need to process a myriad of information that span the perceptual, cognitive and motor domain. Complex and adaptable movements are important not only for satisfying our basic needs, but also to shape and affect the world around us. My main research topic is aimed to examine the neural mechanisms involved in the cascade of events that leads from the conception to the execution of a movement.

Research directions

  • role of the early visual cortex and other sensory areas in action planning and execution;
  • relationship between action planning and motor imagery;
  • role of touch in planning and guiding hand actions;
  • functional connections between sensory and motor areas during action planning and execution.


Simona Monaco, Principal Investigator


For a complete list see Simona Monaco personal webpage

Ongoing collaborations

  • Doug Crawford, Visuomotor Neuroscience, Centre for Vision Research, York University, Canada;
  • Jody Culham, Action and Real-World Imaging, Brain and Mind Institute, University of Western Ontario, Canada.


Research group webpage