Cur­rent Mem­bers

Jonas Obleser
Group leader

Jonas stud­ied Psy­chol­o­gy with a minor in Sta­tis­tics and got his degree from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Kon­stanz in 2004. After doing research at Uni­ver­si­ty Col­lege Lon­don and at the Max Planck Insti­tute in Leipzig, he has held a Chair in Phys­i­o­log­i­cal Psy­chol­o­gy and Research Meth­ods at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Lübeck since 2016.

Cur­rent­ly, his main inter­ests lie in neur­al dynam­ics, that is, the moment-to-moment brain states as well as more sta­ble brain traits that char­ac­terise our per­cep­tion and behav­iour. An impor­tant ques­tion for Jonas is whether there are fea­tures of neur­al dynam­ics that are espe­cial­ly adap­tive or pro­tec­tive to our health as we get old­er. His pre­ferred mod­el sys­tem still is the lis­ten­ing human being.

Jonas loves typog­ra­phy, which can be a pain when you design fig­ures or man­u­scripts with him.

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Mohsen Alavash
Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Mohsen’s back­ground is in bio­med­ical engi­neer­ing. He received his PhD in cog­ni­tive neu­ro­science from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Old­en­burg in 2015. Dur­ing his PhD he inves­ti­gat­ed how brain net­works enable us to resolve cog­ni­tive chal­lenges, and why it occa­sion­al­ly fails to do so reflect­ing its capac­i­ty lim­its. To fol­low-up this ques­tion as a post­doc, he has been study­ing the rela­tion between brain net­works and behav­ior in chal­leng­ing lis­ten­ing tasks at the Max-Planck Insti­tute in Leipzig and cur­rent­ly at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Lübeck. To this end, he adopts graph-the­o­ret­i­cal net­work analy­sis of the human func­tion­al con­nec­tome built upon the brain hemo­dy­nam­ic respons­es or neu­ronal oscil­la­tions.

He loves extract­ing knowl­edge from com­plex data, and is good at mak­ing typos.

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Julia Erb
Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Julia stud­ied Bio­med­i­cine and Neu­ro­science at the Uni­ver­si­ties of Würzburg, Paris and Oxford, and com­plet­ed her PhD at the Max Planck Insti­tute Leipzig in 2014. After a post­doc at Maas­tricht Uni­ver­si­ty, she con­tin­ued her post­doc­tor­al research at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Lübeck in 2017.

Her main inter­ests lie in audi­to­ry pro­cess­ing in human and non-human pri­mates: How are com­plex nat­ur­al sounds, such as speech and ani­mal vocal­iza­tions, rec­og­nized and ana­lyzed in the audi­to­ry sys­tem to cre­ate a coher­ent per­cept? Her cur­rent research exam­ines how cor­ti­cal rep­re­sen­ta­tions of acoustic fea­tures change as we get old­er. To this end, she com­bines com­pu­ta­tion­al mod­el­ling, (func­tion­al) MRI, and psy­choa­coustics.

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Jens Kre­it­e­wolf
Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Jens received his MSc in Psy­chol­o­gy from Ruhr Uni­ver­si­ty Bochum in 2009. His sus­tained inter­est in the audi­to­ry sys­tem was ini­ti­at­ed dur­ing this time, when Jens stud­ied the elec­tro­phys­i­o­log­i­cal cor­re­lates of atten­tion to mov­ing sounds. Dur­ing his Leipzig years at the MPI for Human Cog­ni­tive and Brain Sci­ences (2009−2016), Jens con­duct­ed research on the sen­so­ry aspects of audi­to­ry speech and voice pro­cess­ing using psy­chophysics and fMRI. In 2016, he was award­ed an ACN Eras­mus Mundus stipend to work at the Inter­na­tion­al Lab­o­ra­to­ry for Brain, Music, and Sound Research in Mon­tre­al. Jens brought back from Cana­da a refreshed inter­est in spa­tial hear­ing and a deep love for pou­tine. His cur­rent research aims at improv­ing our under­stand­ing of how the audi­to­ry sys­tem accom­plish­es robust com­pre­hen­sion of speech from dif­fer­ent talk­ers.

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Sebas­t­ian Puschmann
Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Sebas­t­ian is a physi­cist by train­ing. He received a doc­tor­ate degree in cog­ni­tive neu­ro­science from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Old­en­burg in 2013 and fur­ther deep­ened his knowl­edge of brain func­tion as a post­doc­tor­al researcher at the Clus­ter of Excel­lence Hearing4all and the Mon­tre­al Neu­ro­log­i­cal Insti­tute, before join­ing the Audi­to­ry Cog­ni­tion lab in Sep­tem­ber 2019.

Sebas­t­ian inves­ti­gates how the audi­to­ry sys­tem extracts and rep­re­sents behav­ioral­ly rel­e­vant sen­so­ry infor­ma­tion. His cur­rent work deals with the ques­tion how indi­vid­ual dif­fer­ences in sen­so­ry expe­ri­ence or train­ing – for exam­ple, relat­ed to hear­ing impair­ment or musi­cal train­ing – impact on the neur­al pro­cess­ing of speech in back­ground noise. Sebas­t­ian likes to explore new neu­rocog­ni­tive meth­ods and data analy­sis strate­gies. In recent years, he devel­oped a par­tic­u­lar pas­sion for nat­u­ral­is­tic exper­i­men­tal designs, allow­ing him to study audi­to­ry pro­cess­ing in eco­log­i­cal­ly rel­e­vant lis­ten­ing set­tings.

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Franziska Schara­ta
Lab man­ag­er





Lea-Maria Schmitt
PhD stu­dent

Lea obtained a BA in Ger­man Philol­o­gy and a BSc in Psy­chol­o­gy from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Vien­na. After com­plet­ing her MSc in Psy­chol­o­gy at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Lübeck, she start­ed her PhD at the inter­sec­tion of Neu­ro­science and Lin­guis­tics in the Obleser lab. In her research, she asks how the brain exploits seman­tic con­text to pre­dict upcom­ing speech when com­pre­hen­sion is chal­lenged by poor acoustics. A major focus of her work is on the neur­al net­work dynam­ics under­ly­ing the inte­gra­tion of mul­ti­ple con­tex­tu­al timescales dur­ing nat­u­ral­is­tic lis­ten­ing.

Lea loves weld­ing, drilling and grind­ing, which comes in (part­ly) handy when new lab equip­ment is need­ed.


Sarah Tune
Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Sarah received a B.A. degree in Lan­guage and Com­mu­ni­ca­tion stud­ies as well as a PhD in Neu­rolin­guis­tics from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Mar­burg, Ger­many, where she worked on the neu­ro­phys­i­o­log­i­cal sig­na­tures and the neur­al net­works that sup­port lan­guage com­pre­hen­sion.

She then spent two years as a post­doc­tor­al researcher at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia, Irvine before join­ing the Audi­to­ry Cog­ni­tion research group in 2016.

Her main research inter­ests fol­low the ques­tion of how the human brain achieves the remark­able feat of pro­cess­ing and com­pre­hend­ing lan­guage under at times extreme­ly chal­leng­ing con­di­tions and in the face of age-relat­ed neur­al, cog­ni­tive and sen­so­ry decline. Sarah is par­tic­u­lar­ly inter­est­ed in under­stand­ing how dif­fer­ent neur­al and cog­ni­tive strate­gies work togeth­er to enable suc­cess­ful lis­ten­ing. Most of the time you will find her deeply immersed in build­ing ever more com­plex mod­els pre­dict­ing human speech com­pre­hen­sion.

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Leon­hard Waschke
PhD stu­dent

Leo stud­ied psy­chol­o­gy and neu­ro­science in Leipzig and Berlin. While in Leipzig his inter­est in cog­ni­tive neu­ro­science in gen­er­al and the audi­to­ry sys­tem in par­tic­u­lar got fuelled by his work as an under­grad­u­ate assis­tant in the Obleser lab, back then based at the MPI CBS. After grad­u­at­ing from the SCAN mas­ter pro­gram at FU Berlin he re-joined the lab in 2016 to pur­sue his PhD in Lübeck.

He is inter­est­ed in the effect of spon­ta­neous­ly fluc­tu­at­ing brain states on the pro­cess­ing of audi­to­ry infor­ma­tion, per­cep­tion and ulti­mate­ly behav­iour. He fan­cies and tries to devel­op new meth­ods that could help to iden­ti­fy behav­ioural­ly rel­e­vant brain states by infer­ring neu­ronal process­es from non-inva­sive record­ings. He most­ly uses elec­tro­phys­i­ol­o­gy of both human and non-human ani­mals.

Leo enjoys good data visu­al­iza­tion as well as all things aes­thet­i­cal­ly pleas­ing.

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Malte Wöst­mann
Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Malte stud­ied Cog­ni­tive Sci­ence at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Osnabrück and fin­ished his Master’s degree in 2012. Form 2012 to 2015, he did his PhD at the Max-Planck Insti­tute for Human Cog­ni­tive and Brain Sci­ences in Leipzig in the research group ‘Audi­to­ry Cog­ni­tion’, under super­vi­sion of Jonas Obleser. Since 2015, Malte is work­ing as a Post-doc in the Depart­ment of Psy­chol­o­gy at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Lübeck.

His research focus­es on the elec­tro­phys­i­o­log­i­cal dynam­ics of human audi­to­ry atten­tion. Malte is cur­rent­ly main­ly inter­est­ed in how the neur­al sys­tem accom­plish­es the sup­pres­sion of dis­tract­ing infor­ma­tion in order to focus atten­tion on rel­e­vant stim­uli.

Malte loves sim­plic­i­ty, hav­ing con­cise hypothe­ses, and neat exper­i­men­tal designs.

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Mar­tin Orf
PhD stu­dent

Mar­tin is a trained hear­ing acousti­cian. He fin­ished his dual appren­tice­ship in 2014.  Based on his appren­tice­ship, he received his B.Sc in hear­ing acoustics in 2017 in Lübeck. From 2017 to 2019, he did his M.Sc in hear­ing tech­nol­o­gy at the uni­ver­si­ty of Lübeck. Dur­ing his master´s, he came into con­tact with the audi­to­ry cog­ni­tion group. After his intern­ship and mas­ter the­sis in the Obleser group, he start­ed his PhD inves­ti­gat­ing the mech­a­nism of active ignor­ing in nor­mal and hear­ing-impaired lis­ten­ers.

He is inter­est­ed in cre­at­ing vir­tu­al and real­is­tic sound sce­nar­ios in the spa­tial lab. Espe­cial­ly, the mech­a­nisms of ignor­ing works in such sce­nar­ios, e.g. cock­tail-par­ty, are of inter­est for him. Based on his back­ground, he is con­cerned in how active ignor­ing works espe­cial­ly in hear­ing-impaired peo­ple and to inves­ti­gate which hear­ing aid fea­tures could be used to facil­i­tate ignor­ing on an engi­neer­ing lev­el.


Tro­by Lui
PhD stu­dent

Tro­by received both her B.S.Sc. as well as M.Phil. degree in Psy­chol­o­gy from the Chi­nese Uni­ver­si­ty of Hong Kong. Dur­ing her MPhil study, she focused on the con­tri­bu­tion of the frontal cor­tex to build­ing the pre­dic­tion mod­el of ignored stim­uli by using tran­scra­nial mag­net­ic stim­u­la­tion (TMS) and EEG.

After­wards, she joined the Audi­to­ry Cog­ni­tion group in 2019 to pur­sue her research inter­est in how atten­tion­al fil­ter­ing unfolds in time. In par­tic­u­lar, she wants to under­stand the rhyth­mic­i­ty under­ly­ing dis­trac­tion sup­pres­sion and its man­i­fes­ta­tion in brain-behav­ior rela­tions.




Alex Brand­mey­er — Post­doc­tor­al researcher
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Felix Deil­mann — Research Sci­en­tist

Lorenz Fiedler — PhD stu­dent

Mol­ly Hen­ry — Post­doc­tor­al researcher
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Sophie Herb­st — Post­doc­tor­al researcher
PubMed Cog­ni­tion & Brain Dynam­ics

Björn Her­mann — Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Sung-Joo Lim — Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Michael Plöchl — Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Math­ias Scharinger — Post­doc­tor­al researcher

Antje Strauß — PhD stu­dent

Anna Wilsch — PhD stu­dent

Research Assis­tants

Felix Greul­ing

Frauke Kraus

Sven­ja Meyn

Clara Mergn­er

Malte Nau­jokat

Elis­a­beth Ni

Anna Ruhe

Sarah Sen­tis