Last month some of us attended a two-day meeting at the Institute of Psychiatry at which researchers and clinicians from around the world got together to discuss future directions in hallucinations research. Several review papers on different aspects of the Consortium’s interests are in preparation and will appear next year. A full report on the meeting will be published shortly (details to follow); in the meantime, there is further information on the Consortium’s activities here.
I found the meeting tremendously exciting. It was wonderful to witness such an open, collaborative atmosphere, and the talks were all of the highest class. The second day resulted in some fascinating discussions in small working groups, and I made several new friends whose work I had previously only been able to admire from afar. I learned a lot about computational modelling of hallucinations, for example, from Renaud Jardri and Sophie Deneuve and their excellent position paper. The meeting resulted in the agreement of a number of principles and recommendations for future research, which will be published in due course. One of the main themes was a need for better phenomenological characterization of voice-hearing experiences, which is of course a major concern for the Hearing the Voice team.