Prof. Peter Walla
|Work Phone||02 49217260|
School of Psychology
The University of Newcastle, Australia
|Office||206, Behavioral Sciences|
Since November 2009 Peter is Professor at the School of Psychology at the Newcastle University providing academic leadership in Neuroscience. His career began with anatomical and physiological work about photo receptor cells in spider eyes (with Prof. F.G.Barth). While most of this work was done at the Yokohama City University in Japan where Peter was trained in the most sophisticated neurophysiology related to single cell recordings he then graduated at the Vienna University, Department of Zoology.
After being introduced to the single neuron level Peter learned all essential skills to enter the world of human brain research. His interests and techniques were formed at the Clinic for Neurology (Prof. Wilfried Lang and Prof. Lueder Deecke) and the Ear-Nose-Throat Clinic (Prof. Ehrenberger) at the General Hospital in Vienna as well as at the St. Andrews University in Scotland under the wings of Michael D. Rugg.
Peter's PhD was completed in 1998 with work about human memory functions. At that stage he already collected 9 authorships on peer-reviewed Neuroscience-publications in journals as highly ranked as Nature. He was already author of several successful grant proposals and broadened his mind through further international collaborations. While most of his post-doc time was spent in Vienna he did further trainings at the University of Melbourne, the Howard Florey Institute in Melbourne and the National Neuroscience Facility in Melbourne. In addition, he spent time at the Marta Kutas Lab and the Larry Squire Lab in San Diego.
Since 2007 Peter has the honour to be awarded with the highest European academic qualification at two different Universities. He is habilitated in Cognitive Neurobiology at the Medical University in Vienna and also in Biological Psychology at the Vienna University. He became Head of the Biological Psychology Unit at the Faculty of Psychology in Vienna and it did not take long until he was asked to become Deputy Head of the Institute for Clinical, Biological and Differential Psychology at the Vienna University.
In 2008, Peter came to Newcastle following an invitation after being short listed regarding the call for a neuroscience-oriented professorship. He convinced the panel of his scientific and social skills and made his way.
- Habilitation (European Equiv to Doctor of Sc), Medical University of Vienna - Austria, 2003
- Habilitation (European Equiv to Doctor of Sc), University of Vienna, 2007
- Dynamic Olfaction
- Subconscious processing
The brain knows more than it admits!
Although the spectrum of his previous research is wide there is a clear focus on information processing in the human brain below the level of consciousness (subconscious information processing). In the end, highest cognitive functions are based on subconscious and unconscious information processing. If we understand those we better understand human behaviour.
Peter is well experienced in Neuroimaging-related research in fields such as memory, olfaction, cognition and emotion.
His expertise spans from designing brain imaging studies over data analysis to the interpretation of results. His neurobiological thinking spreads out a very refreshing atmosphere at the School of Psychology
I am interested in information processing below the level of consciousness. The brain knows more than it admits and I am trying to get access to that knowledge, because I am convinced that it guides human behaviour to a great extent. For this endeavor I am using objective methodology such as EEG, MEG, fMRI, startle reflex modulation and traditional psychophysiology while at the same time measuring explicit responses too. A comparison of behavioural outputs with underlying physiological processes often reveals interesting discrepancies. Humans do not always do what they say.
Collaborative activities with:
A.Prof. Stefan Chalup (Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment)
Prof. Michael Ostwald (Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment)
Prof. Chris Levi (School of Medicine and Public Health, Neurology)
Prof. Jaak Panksepp (Washington State University, USA)
Prof. Georg Northoff (University of Ottawa, Canada)
Prof. Lueder Deecke (Vienna Medical University, Austria)
A.Prof. Cornelia Herbert (University of Wuerzburg, Germany)
Dr. Monika Koller (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Fields of Research
|170101||Biological Psychology (Neuropsychology, Psychopharmacology, Physiological Psychology)||50|
|030199||Analytical Chemistry Not Elsewhere Classified||25|
|179999||Psychology And Cognitive Sciences Not Elsewhere Classified||25|
Centres and Groups
- Hunter Medical Research Institute
- PRC - Priority Research Centre for Translational Neuroscience and Mental Health (CTNMH)
- Member - • Frontiers in Psychoanalysis and Neuropsychoanalysis
- Member - • Brain Sciences
- Member - • Applied Sciences
- Member - • Journal of Biological Medicine
- Member - • WebmedCentral
- Member - • International Journal of Brain and Cognitive Sciences
- Biological Psychology
- Cognitive Neuroscience