• Updated
02 February 2022

Franck Ramus, recipient of the Jeffrey L. Elman Prize

Franck Ramus has received the Jeffrey L. Elman 2022 Prize for Scientific Achievement and Community Building. This prize rewards his research and his contribution to the dissemination of cognitive science in society.



Franck Ramus is a CNRS research director. He works at the Laboratoire de Sciences Cognitives et Psycholinguistique where he heads the Cognitive development and pathology team. His research work focuses on the cognitive development of children, their disorders, their school learning, their cognitive and cerebral bases, and their genetic and environmental determinants. He is also a member of the Comité scientifique de l’éducation nationale  (the Scientific Committee of the French National Education System ).

Scientific achievement 

Franck Ramus has used the tools of cognitive science to characterise the core deficits in dyslexia. He compared the cognitive profiles of children with different neuro-developmental disorders, including those with dyslexia, with autism and with developmental language disorders, to better distinguish the core deficits from the non-specific comorbidities. He participated in major international cross-language collaborations on causes of reading difficulties and effects of orthographic complexity. He used an epidemiological approach in his ongoing study of two French birth cohorts to uncover the complex causal pathways that underlie cognitive development. Together with his team he produced the first population norms for brain structure using UK Biobank neuroimaging data on 40K individuals.

Franck Ramus, a strong promoter of cognitive science 

Franck Ramus is one of the main promoters of cognitive science in the French-speaking world and beyond. He currently directs one of Europe’s best programs in cognitive science, the Master in Cognitive Science of ENS-PSL, University de Paris, EHESS. He has been a tireless advocate of evidence-based psychology and psychiatry as well as evidence-based education. His writings have been instrumental in shaping the new French policy on autism and the National Strategy for Autism and Neurodevelopmental disorders, firmly combatting widespread non-evidence-based approaches. Through strategic use of popular science platforms and through his blog, he has energetically promoted open science and has embarked on major public debates on education. His dedication to the community, as seen in his creation of the online course on ‘Psychology for Teachers’ has gained him a huge following.

The Cognitive Science Society, for the promotion of cognitive science

The mission of the Society is to promote cognitive science as a discipline, and to foster scientific interchange among researchers in various areas of study, including Artificial Intelligence, Linguistics, Anthropology, Psychology, Neuroscience, Philosophy, and Education. 

This Award was created in recognition of Jeff Elman’s many contributions to the field of cognitive science. The Cognitive Science Society gives the annual Jeffrey L. Elman Prize for Scientific Achievement and Community Building to mid-career cognitive scientists (individuals or teams) whose accomplishments exemplify the twin strands of scientific excellence and commitment to community-building and service that were so evident in Jeff Elman’s career.

This honor will be celebrated at the CogSci 2022 conference with a prize and dedicated symposium.