Causality Guides Time Perception

  • Andrea Desantis
  • Marc Buehner


Desantis and Buehner discuss the relation between time perception and causality. Classically, it has been considered that causality is partly inferred from the temporal relations between events. For instance, people are more likely to report two events as causally linked if they follow each other closely in time than if they are separated by a long delay. The authors review and discuss a complimentary literature proposing that time perception is in turn guided by people’s assumptions about the causal connection between events. Time perception would be shaped by the combination of sensory and internal information such as our prior causal expectations. The authors also discuss how Bayesian models of uncertainty reduction may offer an exploratory hypothesis to understand how causality structures time perception.



We would like to thank Karolina Moutsopoulou for her comments and suggestions.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrea Desantis
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Marc Buehner
    • 4
  1. 1.Département Traitement de l’Information et SystèmesONERASalon-de-ProvenceFrance
  2. 2.Integrative Neuroscience and Cognition Center, CNRS, Université Paris DescartesParisFrance
  3. 3.Institut de Neurosciences de la Timone, CNRS, Aix-Marseille UniversitéMarseilleFrance
  4. 4.School of Psychology, Cardiff UniversityCardiffUK

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