Prof. Vincenzo Romei
Director of the Consciousness Group
Center for studies and Research in Cognitive Neuroscience (CNC)
Department of Psychology
University of Bologna
Viale Europa, 981
Neural bases of Conscious experience: temporal properties of brain communication through Electroencephalography (EEG), noninvasive transcranial brain stimulation (NTBS) and their online combination. Brain plasticity and functional connectivity; Consciousness, visual awareness and cognition; sensory processing and attentional mechanisms; crossmodal and multisensory interactions; motor control; time perception; working memory; ageing; brain oscillatory activity and oscillatory entrainment; state-dependency.
Italian (mother tongue)
English (fluently written and spoken)
Spanish (fluently written and spoken)
French (fluently spoken)
- 2001-2005 PhD in Psychology
Department of Psychology, "Sapienza" University of Rome
- 1995-2001 BSc and MSc (110/110 with honours) in Psychology
Department of Psychology, "Sapienza" University of Rome
- 2018-2023Abilitazione Scientifica Nazionale MIUR
Professore I Fascia, Settore Scientifico 11/E1.
- 2015 Registered Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (UK)
- Since Oct 2017 University of Bologna
- Oct 2016 – Sept 2017 University of Essex
- Oct 2015 - Sept 2016University of Essex
- Jan 2013 – Sept 2015 University of Essex
- 2010-2012 University College London (UCL)
Senior Research Associate at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging and Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
- 2008-2009 University of Glasgow
Research Associate at CCNI
- 2005-2007 University of Geneva
Post-doctoral Research Fellow
- 2003-2004 Harvard Medical School
Visiting Research Fellow
Awards, Honours, Grants
2020-2023 Ministerio De Ciencia, Innovacion Y Universidades, Spain (€99220) The role of alpha oscillations in gating sensory processing during Working Memory maintenance. Role: Co-I. PI: Claudia Poch.
2019-2021 BIAL Foundation (€47000) Boosting WM capacity by strengthening the oscillatory functional fronto-parietal pathway. Grant n. 204/2018. PI Vincenzo Romei
- 2018: Comments in: Turi Z, Alekseichuk I, Paulus W, PLOS Biology (2018). On ways to overcome the magical capacity limit of working memory for the publication: Wolinski N, Cooper NR, Sauseng P, Romei V. The speed of parietal theta frequency drives visuospatial working memory capacity. (2018) PLOS Biology.
- 2016: Listed among the most cited Current Biology articles: Thut G, Veniero D, Romei V, Miniussi C, Schyns P, Gross J. Rhythmic TMS causes local entrainment of natural oscillatory signatures. Current Bioogy. (2011) 21:1176-1185.
- 2016: Best Contributed Poster Award at 6th international conference on Transcranial Brain Stimulation for the presentation of the study: “Parietal Theta Frequency peak drives spatial working memory capacity” by Romei V, Cooper N, Sauseng P, and Wolinski N.
- 2015: Highlights in the Research Highlights of Current Biology and comments in Kerlin JR, Shapiro KL. (2015). Multisensory integration: how sound alters sight. Current Biology. 25:R76-R77 for the publication: Cecere R, Rees G, Romei V. (2015). Individual differences in alpha frequency drive crossmodal illusory perception. Current Biology. 25:231-235.
- 2014: Best Contributed Poster Award at the BACN 2014 Sept 11-12, York for the presentation of the study “Modulation of individual oscillatory frequency-peak by off-peak entrainment” by Wolinski N, Cooper NR and Romei V.
- 2014: Best Contributed Paper Award at the Magstim Neuroscience Conference 2014. May 10-11, Oxford for the presentation of the study “Empowering feedback projections from V5 to V1 boosts motion perceptual sensitivity” by Chiappini E, Avenanti A, Hibbard P and Romei V.
- 2014-2017: Co-I in a grant awarded in a competition for a 3-years grant sponsored by the Italian National Health Service. Project Title: Empowering the brain. Induction of Hebbian-like plasticity in cortico-cortical neural networks with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS): investigations of functional connectivity in healthy subjects and clinical trials in stroke patients. PI Alessio Avenanti. [€314.300]
- 2016-2017: Research Promotion Funds awarded by University of Essex
- 2013-2014: undergraduate research opportunity programme bursary.
- 2013: Best Contributed Paper Award at the 1st Multidisciplinary Conference of Reinforcement Learning and Decision Making (RLDM2013). Oct 25-27. Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey, USA for the presentation of the study “Manipulating model-based and model-free control through neurostimulation of prefrontal cortex” by Smittenaar P, Fitzgerald THB, Prichard G, Romei V, Wright ND, Dietrichsen J, and Dolan RJ.
- 2012: Highlights in the Research Highlights of Current Biology and Comments in: Sauseng P. Brain Oscillations: Phase locked EEG alpha controls perception. Current Biology (2012) 22: R306-R308 for the publication: Romei V, Gross J and Thut G. Sounds reset visual alpha phase and corresponding human visual perception. Current Biology. (2012) 22:807-813.
- 2012: Travel award for BACN2012 in Newcastle as organizer of the symposium: Entrainment of brain oscillations: How rhythmic stimulation affects behavior.
- 2011: Highlights in the Research Highlights of Current Biology for the publication: Thut G, Veniero D, Romei V, Miniussi C, Schyns P, Gross J. Rhythmic TMS causes local entrainment of natural oscillatory signatures. Current Biology. (2011) 21:1176-1185.
- 2010: Conference Highlight at the 16th Annual Meeting of the Organization for Human Brian Mapping, held in Barcelona, Spain (June6-10, 2010), for the presentation of the study: “Occipital alpha phase is reset by sound and cycles with TMS-probed neural excitability” by Romei V, Gross J and Thut G.
- 2009: Conference Highlight at the 15th Annual Meeting of the Organization for Human Brian Mapping, held in San Francisco, US (June 18-23 2009), for the presentation of the study: “Spatially and frequency specific biasing of visual detection through rhythmic TMS over occipito-parietal sites: Preliminary evidence for a causal role of posterior alpha-oscillations in sensory selection” by Thut G and Romei V.
- 2008: Best Poster award at the 3rd International Conference on TMS and tDCS in Gottingen, Germany, October 1-4, for the poster: “Looming sounds selectively and pre-consciously enhance visual cortex excitability” by Romei V, Murray MM and Thut G.
- 2006: Travel award for OHBM 2006
- 2006: SSN Travel Fellowship (FENS Meeting 2006 in Vienna)
- 2002: “Young researchers awards” awarded by “Associazione Italiana Psicologi” (A.I.P.)
- 2002: Graduation Grant awarded by the University of Rome “La Sapienza”, for a period of study (one year) in foreign countries.
2010-Present: Reviewing Editor for Frontiers in Perception Science
2012-Present: Reviewing Editor for Frontiers in Human Science
2013-2015: Academic Editor for Biomed Research International
2017-Present: Editorial Board Member of Scientific Reports, Nature Research
2017-Present: Guest Editor for Frontiers in Consciousness Research
2020-Present: Associate Editor for Frontiers in Cognitive Neuroscience
2007-present: ad hoc referee for the following peer-reviewed journals (alphabetical order):
Attention, Perception and Psychophysics; Biological Psychology; Biological Psychiatry; Brain and Cognition; Brain Connectivity; Brain Research; Brain Stimulation; Brain Topography; Cerebral Cortex; Cognitive, Affective and Behavioural Neuroscience; Cortex; Current Biology; Current Directions in Psychological Science; E-Life; E-Neuro; European Journal of Neuroscience; Experimental Brain Research; Frontiers in Perception Science; Frontiers in Human Neuroscience; Frontiers in Behavioural Neuroscience; iScience; International Journal of Psychophysiology; International Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease; Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience; Journal of Experimental Psychology: General; Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance; Journal of Neurophysiology; Journal of Neuroscience; Journal of Psychosomatic Research; Journal of Vision; Nature Communications; Nature Human Behaviour; Neural Plasticity; NeuroImage; Neuropsychologia; Neuroscience; Neuroscience Letters; Perceptual & Motor skills; PLOS Biol; PLOS ONE; Proceedings of the Royal Society B; Psychological Science; Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics; Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience; Scientific Reports.
2011-present: grant proposals ad hoc reviewer for the following Trusts:
BBSRC (UK); Dr Hadwen Trust for Humane Research (UK); ORA ESRC (UK, INTERNATIONAL); ANR (France); INSERM (France); The Research Foundation – Flanders (Belgium); The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) grant (The Netherlands); German Research Foundation (Germany); DFG (Germany); Austrian Science Fund (FWF); Swiss National Science Foundation (CH). Israel Science Foundation (ISF) (Israel), ERC Advanced grant.
Peer-reviewed Publications (n = 52)
(Scopus) H-index = 24; total citations 3000;
(Google Scholar) H-Index = 25; total citations 4175.
- Comments in: Kerlin JR, Shapiro KL. Multisensory integration: how sound alters sight. Current Biology 2015 25, R76-7.
- Highlights in the Research Highlights of Current Biology.
- Fenner B, Cooper N, Romei V, Hughes G. Individual differences in sensory integration predict differences in time perception and individual levels of schizotypy. Conscious Cogn.(In press).
- Asher JM, Romei V, Hibbard PB. Spatial Frequency Tuning and Transfer of Perceptual Learning for Motion Coherence Reflects the Tuning Properties of Global Motion Processing. Vision (Basel). 2019;3(3):44. Published 2019 Sep 2. doi:10.3390/vision3030044
- Pietrelli M, Zanon M, Làdavas E, Grasso PA, Romei V, Bertini C. Posterior brain lesions selectively alter alpha oscillatory activity and predict visual performance in hemianopic patients. Cortex. 2019;121:347-361. doi:10.1016/j.cortex.2019.09.008
- Migliorati D, Zappasodi F, Perrucci MG, Donno B, Northoff G, Romei V, Costantini M. Individual Alpha Frequency Predicts Perceived Visuotactile Simultaneity. J Cogn Neurosci. 2020;32(1):1-11. doi:10.1162/jocn_a_01464
- Cooke J, Poch C, Gillmeister H, Costantini M, Romei V. Oscillatory Properties of Functional Connections Between Sensory Areas Mediate Cross-Modal Illusory Perception. J Neurosci. 2019;39(29):5711-5718. doi:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3184-18.2019
- Bender M, Romei V, Sauseng P. Slow Theta tACS of the Right Parietal Cortex Enhances Contralateral Visual Working Memory Capacity. Brain Topogr. 2019;32(3):477-481. doi:10.1007/s10548-019-00702-2
- Berntsen MB, Cooper NR, Hughes G, Romei V. Prefrontal transcranial alternating current stimulation improves motor sequence reproduction. Behav Brain Res. 2019;361:39-49. doi:10.1016/j.bbr.2018.12.035
- Ferri F, Venskus A, Fotia F, Cooke J, Romei V. Higher proneness to multisensory illusions is driven by reduced temporal sensitivity in people with high schizotypal traits. Conscious Cogn. 2018;65:263-270. doi:10.1016/j.concog.2018.09.006
- Chiappini E, Silvanto J, Hibbard PB, Avenanti A, Romei V. Strengthening functionally specific neural pathways with transcranial brain stimulation. Curr Biol. 2018;28(13):R735-R736. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2018.05.083
- Wolinski N, Cooper NR, Sauseng P, Romei V. The speed of parietal theta frequency drives visuospatial working memory capacity. PLOS Biology 2018, 16(3):e2005348.
- Comments in: Turi Z, Alekseichuk I, Paulus W (2018) On ways to overcome the magical capacity limit of working memory.
- Borghini G, Candini M, Filannino C, Hussain M, Walsh V, Romei V, Zokaei N, Cappelletti M. Alpha oscillations are causally linked to inhibitory abilities in ageing. (2018) Accepted for publication in J Neurosci.
- Asher JM, O’Hare L,Romei V, Hibbard PB. Typical Lateral Interactions, but Increased Contrast Sensitivity, in Migraine-With-Aura. Vision (2018) 2, 7.
- Fiori F, Chiappini E, Candidi M,Romei V, Borgomaneri S, Avenanti A. “Long-latency interhemispheric interactions between motor-related areas and the primary motor cortex: a dual site TMS study”. (2017) Accepted for publication in Nature Scientific Reports. IF=5.228.
- Berntsen MB, Cooper NR, Romei V. Transcranial alternating current stimulation to the inferior parietal lobe decreases mu suppression to egocentric, but not allocentric hand movements. Neuroscience 2017 344, 124-132. IF=3.231.
- Fiori F, Chiappini E, Soriano M, Paracampo R, Romei V, Borgomaneri S, Avenanti A. Long-latency modulation of motor cortex excitability by ipsilateral posterior inferior frontal gyrus and pre-supplementary motor area. Nature Scientific Reports. 2016 6, 38396. IF=5.228.
- Romei V, Thut G, Silvanto J. Information-Based Approaches of Noninvasive Transcranial Brain Stimulation. Trends in Neurosciences 2016 39, 782-795. IF=12.504
- Romei V, Chiappini E, Hibbard PB, Avenanti A. Empowering reentrant projections from V5 to V1 boosts sensitivity to motion. Current Biology 2016 26, 2155-60. IF=8.983.
- Romei V, Bauer M, Brooks, JL, Economides M, Penny W, Thut G, Driver J. Bestmann S. Causal evidence that intrinsic beta-frequency is relevant for enhanced signal propagation in the motor system as shown through rhythmic TMS. NeuroImage 2016. 126:120-30. IF=5.463.
- Rigato S, Rieger G, Romei V. Multisensory signalling enhances pupil dilation. Nature Scientific Reports 2016 6:26188. IF=5.228.
- Murray MM, Thelen A, Thut G, Romei V, Martuzzi R, Matusz PJ. The multisensory function of the human primary visual cortex. Neuropsychologia 2015 Aug 11. pii:S0028-3932(15) 30127-30135. Review. IF=2.989.
- Cecere R, Rees G, Romei V. Individual differences in alpha frequency drive crossmodal illusory perception. Current Biology 2015 25, 231-235. IF=8.983.
21. Sutherland CA, Thut G, Romei V. Hearing brighter: changing in-depth visual perception through looming sounds. Cognition 2014 132, 312-323. IF= 3.411
22. Cecere R, Romei V, Bertini C, Ladavas E. Crossmodal enhancement of visual orientation discrimination by looming sounds requires functional activation of primary visual areas: A case study. Neuropsychologia 2014 56, 350-358.IF=2.989.
23. Smittenaar P, Fitzgerald TH, Romei V, Wright ND, Dolan RJ. Disruption of dorsolateral prefrontal cortex decreases model-based in favor of model-free control in humans. Neuron 2013 80, 914-919.IF=13.974.
24. Romei V, Murray MM, Cappe C and Thut G. The contribution of sensory dominance and attentional bias to cross-modal enhancement of visual cortex excitability. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 2013 25, 1122-1135. IF=4.085.
25. de Haas B, Cecere R, Cullen H, Driver J, Romei V.Discrimination of near-threshold visual stimuli is enhanced by concurrent presentation of auditory stimuli of longer duration. PLoS ONE 2013 8, e54789.IF=3.234.
Di Luzio P, Borgomaneri S, Sanchioni S, Tessari A, Romei V. Time spent on first-person shooting videogames reduces crossmodal illusions, enhances binding precision and increases migraine severity Under revision in Cortex.
Trajkovic J, Di Gregorio F, Ferri F, Diciotti S, Romei V. Resting-state alpha oscillations and connectivity as valid and reliable markers of schizotypy: a machine learning approach. Under review in Brain Connectivity.
Fotia F, Cooke J, Van Dam L, Ferri F, Romei V. The temporal sensitivity to the tactile-induced Double Flash Illusion mediates the impact of beta oscillations on schizotypal personality traits.Under revision in Consciousness and Cognition.
Valentini E, Halder S, McInnersey D, Cooke J Romei V. Assessing the specificity of the relationship between brain alpha oscillations and tonic pain. Under revision in NeuroImage. Available at BioRxiV [https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/787283v1]
Di Gregorio F, Trajkociv J, Roperti C, Avenanti A, Romei V. Oscillatory correlates of subjective confidence, objective accuracy and their interplay in conscious perception. In submission to Cerebral Cortex
Chiappini E, Borgomaneri S, Marangon M, Turrini S, Romei V, Avenanti A. Driving associative plasticity in premotor-motor connections through a novel paired associative stimulation based on long-latency cortico-cortical interactions. Under revision in Brain Stim.
Ellena G, Starita F, Haggard P, Romei V, Ladavas E. Fearful faces modulate spatial attention in peripersonal space: an ERP study Under review in Neuropsychologia.
I am routinely invited to conferences, workshops, and Departmental Seminars. Selected invited talks:
Invited at symposium. Enhancing brain connectivity and testing its functional significance through manipulation of Hebbian-like plasticity of targeted networks. 7th International Conference on Non-Invasive Brain Stimulation (NIBS) Baden Baden, 2020.
Invited at symposium. Rhythms for perception: how neural oscillations determine our perceptual interpretation ECVP 26=31 August 2018, Trieste.
- Invited talk at Workshop: Shaping brain waves: an information based approach. University of Cambridge, Uk 18-19 Jan 2018.
- Invited talk at symposium: Shaping Brain waves: an information based approach. Neurospin, Paris, France, 11 Sept 2017.
- Shaping Brain waves: an information based approach. Invited Speaker at University of Tubinghen, Germany 12 June 2017.
- Shaping brain waves: an information based approach. Invited Speaker at Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelle épinière – ICM CNRS UMR 7225 – INSERM, Paris, France, April 28th 2017.
- Invited talk for the symposium: “Driving the brain to understand cognition” at CNS, in San Francisco 25-28 March 2017: “Shaping brain waves: an information based approach”.
- Invited talk at conference: The speed of parietal theta frequency drives visuospatial working memory capacity. 6th international Conference on Transcranial Brain Stimulation. 7-10 Sept 2016 Gottingen, Germany.
- New vistas in Neuromodulation: shaping brain oscillations and connectivity in the human brain. Invited talk at the University of Maastricht, The Netherlands. 10 June 2016.
- New vistas in Neuromodulation: beyond a causal approach in the study of brain oscillations and connectivity. Invited talk at the University of Trento. Rovereto, 30 Oct 2015.
- Invited talk for the symposium: “Brain stimulation investigations of cognition” at BACN2015 in Essex, September 10-11 2015: “Induction of cortico-cortical Hebbian-like plasticity in the human visual system boosts visual awareness”
- Causal mapping of brain functions: from brain oscillations to brain connectivity. Invited talk at the University of East Anglia. June 3rd 2015.
- Crossmodal illusory perception depends on individual differences in alpha frequency peak. Invited talk at the EPS Jon Driver Workshop. 7 Jan 2015.
- Invited talk for best poster prize at Magstim Neuroscience Conference, Oxford, May 10-11 2014. “Empowering feedback projections from V5 to V1 boosts sensitivity for motion”.
- Assessing the functional impact of brain connectivity and brain oscillations using novel methodologies in Neurostimulation. Invited talk at the Symposium on Attention and perception at BACN, 11-12 Sept 2014, York.
- Invited talk at symposium entitled “Demystifying the Contribution of Attentional Control Mechanisms to Multisensory Processing” at the IMRF 2014 conference, June 11-14, Amsterdam.
- Novel methodologies in Neurostimulation. Invited talk at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain, 23rd May 2014. Hosted by Prof. Salvador Soto-Faraco.
- New insights on the functional role of alpha oscillations in (multi)sensory processing. Invited talk at City University London, Department of Psychology, London. 5th Feb 2014. Hosted by Dr. Elliot Freeman.
- The functional role of brain oscillations in sensory and multisensory processing. Invited talk at Aston Brain Centre, School of Psychology, Birmingham. 29th Jan 2014. Hosted by Prof. Klauss Kessler.
- The causal role of alpha oscillations in (multi)sensory selection. Invited talk for the Symposium in the honour of Walfgang Klimesch. University of Salzburg, Austria. 19 and 20 September 2013.
- Assessing the causal role of oscillatory brain activity in perception, cognition and action by combining TMS and EEG. Invited talk for the Symposium at Aalto University Finland: 17 May 2013. Hosted by Dr. Juha Silvanto.
- Driving brain oscillations to understand behavior: a causal mapping approach. Invited talk at CiMeC, Universita’ degli studi di Trento, Rovereto Italy. 22 June 2012. Hosted by Prof. Nathan Weisz.
- Crossmodal auditory interactions in early visual areas: as early as an alpha wave. Invited talk at Consolider CognNeuro Seminar Series at Univeritat de Barcelona and Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain. 25 May 2012. Hosted by Prof. Salvador Soto-Faraco.
- New perspectives in neuromodulation: from crossmodal interactions to brain entrainment. Presented at the symposium entitled “Entrainment of brain oscillations: How rhythmic stimulation affects behaviour”. BACN2012, Newcastle, UK. 11-13 April 2012.
- On entrainment of occipito-parietal brain rhythms and modulation of perception by rhythmic transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) presented at the symposium entitled: Entraining the Brain? Effects of rhythmic brain stimulation protocols on oscillatory brain activity and behaviour”. ICON XI, Palma de Mallorca, Spain.September 2011.
- Entraining the Brain? Effects of rhythmic TMS bursts on EEG oscillatory brain activity and behaviour”. Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging, London, UK.September 2011.
- Looming sounds selectively and pre-consciously enhance visual cortex excitability. 3rd International Conference on Transcranial Magnetic and Direct Current Stimulation. October 1st-4th 2008, Göttingen, Germany.
- Visual awareness without visual stimulus presentation: An EEG-TMS study on the electrophysiological predictors of conscious phosphene perception after single pulse TMS. Organization for Human Brain Mapping. Florence, 2006.
- 2020-Present: Director of the Research Group "Consciousness".
- 2018-Present: Member of the executive board of the interdisciplinary PhD Programme in Health and Technology at the University of Bologna.
- 2014-2016: Year 3 Tutor at the University of Essex, D
- 2015-2017: Research Director for Cognitive Neuroscience, Department of Psychology.University of Essex
- 2014-2017: Coordinator of the Final Undergraduate Research Project.
- 2013: Member of the REF 2014 Committee, University of Essex.
- 2013-2017: Member of the Research Strategy Committee, Department of Psychology, University of Essex.
- 2013-2017: Organiser of the Departmental Research Seminars, Department of Psychology, University of Essex.
- 2014-2017 Member of the ANR (Agence National De La Recherche, France) panel for the selection process of national grant proposals
- 2014-2018: External Examiner for the MSc in Cognitive Neuroscience at the University of Sussex.