Hi and welcome to my website!

Janna Gottwald @ the Royal Society of Sciences at Uppsala, Sweden (Picture by Laura Sakka)

I am a developmental psychologist and movement scientist. I have a Ph.D. from Uppsala University (Sweden), and a Psychology Diploma (≈ M.Sc.) with a clinical focus from University of Potsdam (Germany). Currently, I am leading the project “An Embodied Account of Early Executive Functioning” funded by the Swedish Research Council at Uppsala University. This 3-years project seeks to understand the early links between infants’ body movements and their cognitive abilities.

Generally, my research focuses on sensorimotor and cognitive development from infancy to childhood. I am particularly interested in how young infants develop new motor skills, such as reaching and grasping, and how these skills relate to later cognitive development. Here, I focus on the development of early executive functions (working memory and inhibitory control). This interest started during my doctoral work with Gustaf Gredebäck and Claes von Hofsten. Another core interest of mine is to better understand the interplay of feed-forward and adjustment elements in infants reaching movements and to find good ways to model reaching actions as part of larger action sequences. Furthermore, I am interested in children’s perception and knowledge of their bodies and what role movement plays in informing children about their bodily self. In my recent postdoc with Dorothy Cowie at Durham University (UK), I investigated how children combine tactile, proprioceptive and visual information to locate their hands in space.

Theory-wise, I am passionate about embodied cognitive science, dynamic systems approaches, and active/direct perception perspectives. In my behavioural experiments, I mostly use motion-tracking techniques (QualisysVicon, Ascension). Besides this, I have experience with ERP/EEG (BrainProductsEGI), psychophysiological methods (Biopac), and Virtual Reality (Oculus).

If you want to learn more about me and my research, you can find me on OSFResearchGate, GoogleScholarMendeley, publons, ORCID, and LinkedIn. I also enjoy tweeting about science, research and academia (@JannaGottwald).