What's your face telling me? A comparative perspective on measuring facial expressions across species

Date & Time

April 17, 2019. 16:00-


Large Conference Room, PRI

Cátia Correia Caeiro
University of Lincoln

Facial expressions are complex and subtle signals, central for communication and emotion production and perception. The Facial Action Coding System (FACS) has been the gold standard to measure human facial movement from the underlying muscles and, thus avoiding a priori assumptions. By using muscular homologies, the FACS anatomical basis allows the objective study of other species communication and emotion. Hence, I have been developing and applying FACS in several other species, including orangutans, dogs, cats, Japanese macaques and common marmosets, in order to better understand how individuals communicate. I also investigate the perception of emotional cues using eye-tracking and the human-dog relationship as an interspecific comparative model. By objectively measuring production and perception of facial expressions across species, we can not only shed light into different species cognitive abilities, but also understand the evolution of communication and emotion.