Daniel Pressnitzer


Phone: +33 (0)1 44 32 26 73
Email: daniel.pressnitzer (at) ens.fr
Position: CNRS Director of Research, Head of Audition team
LSP team: audition
Office: 29 rue d'Ulm, 2nd floor, room 204
Personal website: http://audition.ens.fr/dp/


Short Biography

After a first degree in Engineering, Daniel Pressnitzer obtained his Master's in Acoustics, Signal Processing and Computer Science in Paris. His PhD was conducted at Ircam on the topic of auditory perception and musical consonance/dissonance. He then worked at the Centre for the Neural Basis of Hearing in Cambridge, UK, first as Fyssen fellow and then as a Wellcome Trust postdoctoral associate. He returned to France as a CNRS researcher in 2000. Now Director of research at CNRS, he is a founding member and the current head of the Audition team at Ecole normale supérieure

Après une première formation d'ingénieur, Daniel Pressnitzer a  obtenu un DEA en Acoustique, Traitement du signal, Informatique, Appliqués à la Musique (ATIAM) à Paris. Son doctorat, réalisé à l'Ircam, portait sur la perception auditive et la consonnance/dissonance musicale. Il a ensuite travaillé au Centre for the Neural Basis of Hearing à Cambridge au Royaume-Uni, d'abord comme boursier Fyssen et ensuite comme chercheur associé au Wellcome Trust. Il est retourné en France comme chercheur au CNRS en 2000. Il est maintenant Directeur de recherche au CNRS. Il a co-fondé l'équipe Audition de l'École normale supérieure, et il en est son directeur actuel.


Research Interests

My research is focused on the experimental study of audition. For a number of years now, I have tried to develop an original approach that is based on the tight integration of: i) several levels of analysis, from the acoustic signal to non-verbal auditory cognition ii) several methodological tools, from psychophysics to modelling and physiology iii) a combination of fundamental and applied questions, with translational research mostly in the field of hearing-impairment and audio processing. Briefly, the basic hypothesis driving my work is that there exist a core of abilities which I refer to as “mid-level audition”, critical to real-world listening. Hence, my research has touched upon processes that have traditionally been considered separately, and I believe this has shown many of them are tightly intertwined in realistic situations.

Current projects include investigations of auditory memory, rapid adaptive plasticity, perceptual bistability in the auditory and visual modalities, music perception, recognition of natural sound sources.



I teach in the masters of cognitive sciences from the Ecole Normale Supérieure, EHESS, Universités Paris 5, for which I coordinate the Auditory Perception course (P2). I also teach in the master ATIAM and the master IMA.



  • I am the leader of the Audition team at the Laboratoire des Systèmes Perceptifs (2008-).
  • I co-manage the Neuroscience track of the Cogmaster - recruiting bright students every year!


Selected publications

Andrillon, T., Kouider, S., Agus, T., & Pressnitzer, D. (2015). Perceptual learning of acoustic noise generates memory-evoked potentials. Current Biology, 25: 2823-2829. 

Chambers, C. & Pressnitzer, D. (2014). Perceptual hysteresis in the judgment of auditory pitch shift. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics, 76: 1271-1279.

Kondo, H., Pressnitzer, D., Toshima, I., & Kashino, M. (2012). Effects of self-motion on auditory scene analysis. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS), 109(17):6775-80.

Schwartz, J.L., Grimault, N., Hupé, J.M., Moore, B.C.J., & Pressnitzer, D. (2012). Multistability in perception: binding sensory modalities, an overview. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, 367(1591), 896-905.

Agus, T.R., Thorpe, S.J., & Pressnitzer, D. (2010). Rapid formation of auditory memories: Insights from noise. Neuron. 66, 610-618.

Pressnitzer, D., Sayles, M., Micheyl, C., & Winter, I. M. (2008). Perceptual organization of sound begins in the auditory periphery. Current Biology, 18, 1124-1128.

Pressnitzer, D., & Hupé, J.M. (2006). Temporal dynamics of auditory and visual bistability reveal common principles of perceptual organization. Current Biology. 16, 1351-1357.

More complete list of publications with pdfs here.

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