PUBLI : Ilka Vari-Lavoisier, « Minds on the move : Crossing disciplines to shed new light on human cognition », WIREs Cognitive Science, Vol.12, 1, Jan-Feb.2021.


Mobi­lity is inte­gral to mankind, but current cogni­tive research on migrants is almost nonexistent. Most of the exis­ting know­ledge on human cogni­tion is based on data collected from (and by) the weal­thiest and least mobile citi­zens of the world. In turn, most of the migra­tion lite­ra­ture relies on super­fi­cial, and at times erro­neous, assump­tions regar­ding the cogni­tive processes under­lying migra­tory pheno­menon. However, research conducted to date in reveals stri­king conver­gences between core issues rele­vant to scho­lars in cogni­tive science on the one hand, and in migra­tion studies on the other. This current lack on cross-​disciplinary dialog has no scien­tific grounds for two fields, which are inhe­rently inter­dis­ci­pli­nary, and yet it has concer­ning socio­po­li­tical impli­ca­tions. Mapping out a novel research agenda at the cross­roads of the cogni­tive and social sciences, this article stands as an invi­ta­tion for resear­chers to engage in further colla­bo­ra­tive work invol­ving joint data collec­tions and joint data analyses. This paper argues that resear­ching migrant cogni­tion would give more breadth to cogni­tive science and more depth to migra­tion studies, which has the poten­tial to better inform the design of public poli­cies. Though the examples of (a) visual percep­tion, (b) future-​oriented cogni­tion, and (c) language acqui­si­tion, this article shows that pairing the disco­ve­ries of migra­tion scho­lars and cogni­tive scien­tists can move forward our unders­tan­ding on the human mind, in an ever-​moving world.