On a confusion about access consciousness: How scientists and the brain access information about consciousness
The distinction between phenomenal consciousness (P) and access consciousness (A) is strongly contested. Ambiguity in the concept of A could partially explain these discussions, so a refined formulation of A is proposed. It respects the conceptual, epistemological and empirical criticism on the distinction between P and A and presents a new perspective to the neural realisation of A. Common views about neural representations and their availability in the brain imply that information for neuronal populations and for researchers is not equivalent. The introduction of two concepts of information provides tools to directly relate access consciousness to brain functioning. These developments provide a new perspective on the distinction between P and A for both proponents and opponents of the distinction.
Faculteit der Filosofie, Theologie en Religiewetenschappen