Edgar Dubourg

Edgar Dubourg

École Normale Supérieure (ENS-PSL)

Edgar Dubourg, a graduate of Sciences Po Paris and La Sorbonne, is currently completing his PhD in cognitive science at the Département d’études cognitives of the École Normale Supérieure (ENS-PSL). His interdisciplinary research integrates insights from the natural sciences—behavioral ecology, evolutionary psychology, and cognitive neuroscience—and the humanities—literary theory, literary history, and cultural studies. Employing both computational and experimental methods, he aims to elucidate the psychological foundations and cultural evolution of fictions.

A model of gaming preferences informed by the hierarchical nature of goal-oriented cognition

Video game design and player engagement revolve around the concept of agency, which refers to the ability to influence and shape one’s environment through personal choices and actions. However, agency is far from being a unitary concept: different types of agency can be distinguished according to the nature of the agent’s goal. Recent models of voluntary action in cognitive science suggest that goals are organized hierarchically. In this talk, I will present these models and show how they can generate insight into how humans interact with games. I will argue that this research can help improve existing taxonomies of video game types, better understand player preferences, and refine the relationship between human psychology and human-computer interaction.