Virtual Reality Symposium: The Body, Self & Other


April 11, 2019

IDC Herzliya


Program in short

Program with Abstracts


registration for morning session

registration for afternooon session


Virtual reality (VR) is gradually becoming widely available as an indispensable tool for researchers, artists, social activists, and journalists. VR and related technologies – augmented reality and telepresence (referred to as XR) – offer new ways to explore the human mind, brain, and body, as well as (arguably) a tool with an unprecedented ability for persuasion and influence. Research in the last decade has discovered the fascinating possibility to manipulate not only our external senses, but also our sense of body ownership, and with it the possibility of transforming our "self", as well as our attitudes towards others. At the same time, popular culture heralds VR as the ultimate "empathy" machine, leading to a proliferation of projects aimed at making us more empathic to each other. The goal of this symposium is to offer a multi-disciplinary perspective; we invite scholars from social and natural sciences and the humanities as well as artists, activists, or industry members, to suggest talks discussing the following or similar questions:

  • Embodiment and re-embodiment in VR
  • XR as a tool for transforming the self
  • XR and empathy
  • Immersive journalism
  • XR as a tool for social science research
  • XR as a tool for social activism and art
  • XR as a tool for human neuroscience


Keynote speaker: Prof Maria-Sanchez Vives, ICREA/IDIBAPS, co-founder of EventLab Barcelona (neuroscience and VR research) and Virtual Bodyworks


Organizers: Daniel Landau and Doron Friedman, IDC, Herzliya


head of a man made of triangles