Formalising social representation to explain psychiatric symptoms

Joseph Barnby, Peter Dayan, Vaughan Bell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent work in social cognition has moved beyond a focus on how people process social reward to examine how healthy people represent other agents and how this is altered in psychiatric disorder. However, formal modelling of social representation has not kept pace with these changes, impeding our understanding of how core aspects of social cognition function, and fail, in psychopathology. We suggest that belief-based computational models provide a basis for an integrated sociocognitive approach to psychiatry with the potential to address important but unexamined pathologies of social representation such as maladaptive schemas and illusory social agents.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-332
Number of pages16
JournalTrends in Cognitive Sciences
Issue number3
Early online date4 Jan 2023
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023

Cite this