University of Pittsburgh
Primary Faculty

Mazviita Chirimuuta

Assistant Professor, Director of Graduate Studies
Adjunct, Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition and Department of Philosophy


1017 CL

My research examines the relationship between neuroscience and the philosophy of mind and perception. My main project in recent years has been on colour vision, developing a theory of colour which acknowledges the complexities of visual function revealed by recent perceptual science. In addition to published articles and chapters, this work will appear as a monograph, Outside Colour, with MIT Press. Alongside experimental work on visual cognition, my latest research looks at the implications of neuroplasticity for questions concerning mechanistic explanation in the philosophy of neuroscience.


PhD, University of Cambridge, 2004

BSc, University of Bristol, 2000

Selected Courses Taught

Central Problems in Systems Neuroscience (Grad)

Methods and Interpretation in Cognitive Neuroscience (Grad)

Perception (Grad)

Philosophy of Neuroscience (Undergrad)

Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence (Undergrad)

Selected Publications

Chirimuuta, M. Outside Color: Perceptual Science and the Puzzle of Color in Philosophy. MIT Press.

Chirimuuta, M (2014) Psychophysical Methods and the Evasion of Introspection, Philosophy of Science, 81(5):914-926.

Chirimuuta, M. (2014) Minimal Models and Canonical Neural Computations: The Distinctness of Computational Explanation in Neuroscience, Synthese, 191:127-153.

Chirimuuta, M. & Paterson, M.W.D. (2014). A Methodological Molyneux Question: Sensory Substitution, Plasticity and the Unification of Perceptual Theory. In D. Stokes & M. Matthen (eds.) Perception and its Modalities, Oxford University Press.

Chirimuuta, M. (2013) Extending, Changing and Explaining the Brain. Biology and Philosophy, 28 (4):613-638.

Chirimuuta, M. & Gold, I.J. (2009). The embedded neuron, the enactive field?. In Bickle, J. (ed.) Handbook of Philosophy and Neuroscience. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Chirimuuta, M. (2008). Reflectance Realism and Colour Constancy: What would count as scientific evidence for Hilbert’s ontology of colour? Australasian Journal of Philosophy, 86(4), 563-582.

Chirimuuta, M., Morrone, M.C. & Burr, D. (2007). Perceptual learning of modality specific visual attentional effects. Vision Research, 47, 60-70.

Chirimuuta, M., & Tolhurst, D.J. (2005). Does a Bayesian model of V1 contrast coding offer a neurophysiological account of human contrast discrimination? Vision Research, 45, 2943-2959.