Romke Rouw studied Psychology at the University of Amsterdam, and received her PhD in 2001 from Tilburg University. During her doctoral thesis (with Prof. Beatrice de Gelder) she studied the ‘special’ processes involved in face recognition. In 2001, she returned to the University of Amsterdam as faculty member in the group Brain and Cognition at the Psychology department. She currently teaches graduate and undergraduate courses, gives lectures to academic and non-academic audiences, has management functions at the UvA, and performs cognitive and neuroscience research. Her research is on perception and sensations, with a particular fascination for the surprisingly loose relationship between the stimulus input from our physical environment on the one hand, and the rich sensations in our private mental world on the other hand. This is not only the case for ‘special cases’ such as synesthesia; during a one-year visit to the lab of professor Kosslyn at Harvard University she examined the similarities between visual percepts and visual mental images. She currently studies the cognitive and neuroscientific mechanisms underlying extraordinary sensations. She finds synesthesia a great example of how ‘different’ sensations do not need to be ‘bad’! She is a visiting scholar at University of California, San Diego, since 2011.
Michaela Wiesner received a Master of Library and Information Sciences degree from the University of South Carolina in 2010. She obtained her Bachelor of Liberal Science degree from the University of Iowa in 2008. She currently works as an Assistant Branch Manager for the Dorchester County Library, in South Carolina; she has worked for this library system for 15 years, including previous work as a Children’s Services Librarian. She was born in Karlsruhe, Germany, and moved to the United States in 1989; she has also lived in Chungli, Taiwan, R.O.C., from 1997 to 2001.