History

Although principal investigator and head of lab Talis Bachmann carried out experimental research already beginning with mid-seventies of the 20th century (in Tartu University Department of Psychology) and continued this research occasionally elsewhere (Moscow, Vanderbilt University in Nashville USA), the lab as such was initiated in mid-nineties. The location was Tallinn where Talis held the post of Rector of university and also worked as a professor of cognitive psychology. ESF grants and targeted financing through the Estonian Scientific Competency Council were the financing sources and the lab – Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience — enjoyed a place in the building of the Tallinn University located at a street with a funny name – Karu Street, which should be Bear Street in English. None of the lab members nor subjects beared any close resemblance to bear though. Several publications between 1995 and 1998 (plus a couple of later ones) owe to the work done in that place. The core of the lab included people like Endel Põder, Mari Sarv, Neeme Kahusk, Kadri Mäger, Andra Oja, with research students featuring Kaupo Kalev and Karita Hommuk among others. When Talis left Estonia for teaching and research in England from 1996 up to 1999, the lab continued its existence and Talis kept supervising it from a distance, but within the EU.

In the beginning of a new millennium, after Talis had returned from England to start working in the private university in Tallinn called Institute of Law, the lab persisted. But now its personnel was affiliated both with Tallinn University and Institute of Law. Generously enough, as some of the people in the lab were master- and doctoral students of Tallinn University, the room was granted and busily used. When Institute of Law was associated with University of Tartu, lab members gradually became more and more affiliated with University of Tartu. An important development in early 2000s was establishment of the Estonian Center for Behavioral and Health Sciences. Our lab joined this prestigeous Estonian center of excellency becoming one of its research groups – Perception and Consciousness group. Thus, in addition to our own research money through targeted financing and ESF grants resources of ECBHS also began to support the lab. (Moreover, the doctoral school opened as affiliated with the center allowed additional benefits such as travel for graduate students, purchase of computers for them, inviting high level lecturers from aboroad, etc. Not to mention the very successful and fun to attend, yearly conferences of ECBHS.)

At one point, time was ripe for moving the lab from Karu Street to the Tallinn rooms of the Faculty of Law, University of Tartu. The move took place in 2006/2007. But the name of the new street kept remaining amusing. Now we are in the Teatri väljak, which in English means Theatre Square. Although we try to be not so overly theatrical (most of the time). The location is excellent: center of the city, right by the national theatre Estonia and Foreign Ministry, in front of a newly erected shopping mall and very close to the famous medieval old town of Tallinn.