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Kitazaki, Michiteru

Affiliation Department of Computer Science and Engineering
Title Professor
Fields of Research Perceptual Psychology / Cognitive Neuroscience / Virtual Reality
Degree PhD (University of Tokyo)
Academic Societies Japanese Psychological Association / Virtual Relity Society of Japan / Vision Society of Japan / Japanese Psychonomic Society / Vision Sciences Society
E-mail mich@cs
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Laboratory website URL
Researcher information URL(researchmap) Researcher information


We aim to understand scientifically how we perceive the world/environment and communicate with others. Embodied perception is a main perspective in our research. Our perceptual process and communication are crucially connected to our body physically and psychologically. We are investigating three research themes based on this perspective.

  1. Science for Mobile Observers
  2. Science for Embodied Reality
  3. Science for Implicit Social Cognition

Human body and our body scheme are changing with virtual reality technology and robotics. We investigate how our mind, behavior and societal issues change by modifed and new bodies. It contributes to designing the future society.

Theme1:Science for Mobile Observer

Driving simulator

To understand perception for mobile observers, we are investigating self-motion perception, 3-D perception, scene and human-body recognition across viewpoints with psychophysical experiments. To know interaction of perception and action, we are measuring motor behavior and perception during action such as walking and driving a car. Parts of driving study are cooperative studies with motor companies. We are developing a system to experience tele-presence of walking using virtual reality.

Selected publications and works

Kitazaki, M., Hamada, T., Yoshiho, K., Kondo, R., Amemiya, T., Hirota, K., and Ikei, Y. (2019). Virtual walking sensation by pre-recorded oscillating optic flow and synchronous foot vibration. i-Perception, 10(5), 1–14. doi:10.1177/2041669519882448
Amemiya, T., Ikei, Y., and Kitazaki, M. (2019). Remapping peripersonal space by using foot sole vibrations without any body movement. Psychological Science,
Kitazaki, M. (2013), Effects of retinal position on visuo-motor adaptation of visual stability in a virtual environment, i-Perception, 4(4), 242-252.
Kawahara, J., Yanase, K., and Kitazaki, M. (2012), Attentional capture by the onset and offset of motion signals outside the spatial focus of attention, Journal of Vision, 12(12): 10.
Kitazaki, M. and Kimura, T. (2010), Effects of long-term adaptation to sway-yoked visual motion and galvanic vestibular stimulation on visual and vestibular control of posture, Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 19(6), 544-556.
Kitazaki, M. and Sato, T. (2003), Attentional modulation of self-motion perception, Perception, 32, 475-484.


self-motion, optic flow, galvanic vestibular stimulation, perception and action, driving simulator

Theme2:Science for Embodied Reality

Body editing by motion capture and virtual reality

To know what is realty, we are focusing on body perception, body ownership, and self-agency. Perceptual reality must be based on our body and its perception. We are investigating material perception, perceptual aesthetics, lightness perception, self-motion perception, human-body perception, and augmented human in virtual-reality environments. Cross-modal studies such as vision-vestibular interaction on postural control and face-voice interaction on emotions are included in the theme. We are modifying human body appearance and function using virtual reality to see how human mind and behavior change in such modified bodies.

Selected publications and works

Kondo, R., Tani, Y., Sugimoto, M., Inami, M., and Kitazaki, M. (2020). Scrambled body differentiates body part ownership from the full body illusion. Scientific Reports, 10:5274, DOI: 10.1038/s41598-020-62121-9
Kondo, R., Tani, Y., Sugimoto, M., Minamizawa, K., Inami, M., and Kitazaki, M. (2020). Re-association of Body Parts: Illusory Ownership of a Virtual Arm Associated with the Contralateral Real Finger by Visuo-motor Synchrony. Frontiers in Robotics and AI: Virtual Environments, 7:26. doi: 10.3389/frobt.2020.00026
Kondo, R., Sugimoto, M., Minamizawa, K., Hoshi, T., Inami, M., and Kitazaki, M. (2018). Illusory body ownership of an invisible body interpolated between virtual hands and feet via visual-motor synchronicity, Scientific Reports, 8:7541
Kitazaki, M., Kobiki, H., and Maloney, L. T. (2008), Effect of pictorial depth cues, binocular disparity cues and motion parallax depth cues on lightness perception in three-dimensional virtual scenes, PLoS ONE, 3(9): e3177. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0003177.


material perception, human body and movement, embodiment, virtual reality, cross-modal perception, perceptual development, human-robot interaction

Theme3:Science for Implicit Social Cognition

Humans show empathic neural responses for robots in pain

We interact with others naturally, and perceive the world and others based on social communications. The crucial factor for implicit social cognition is our body. We are investigating body perception, neurophysiology of empathy, equity, and moral. We found that the preverbal infants show sympathy for others in distress and that humans can empathize with humanoid robots.

Selected publications and works

Sato, A., Matsuo, A., and Kitazaki, M. (2019). Social contingency modulates the perceived distance between self and other. Cognition, 192, 1-5. doi: 10.1016/j.cognition.2019.06.018
Kenward, B., Berggren, M., Kitazaki, M., Itakura, S., and Kanakogi, Y. (2018). Implicit social associations for geometric shape agents more strongly influenced by visual form than by explicitly identified social actions. Psychologia, 61(1), 37-52
Ishikawa, M., Park, Y-h., Kitazaki, M., and Itakura, S. (2017). Social information affects adults’ evaluation of fairness in distributions: An ERP approach. PLoS ONE, 12(2): e0172974. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0172974
Suzuki, Y., Galli, L., Ikeda, A., Itakura, S. and Kitazaki, M. (2015). Measuring empathy for human and robot hand pain using electroencephalography. Scientific Reports, 5:15924; doi: 10.1038/srep15924
Kanakogi, Y., Okumura, Y., Inoue, Y., Kitazaki, M., and Itakura, S. (2013), Rudimentary sympathy in preverbal infants: Preference for others in distress, PLOS ONE, 8(6): e65292.
Tamura, T., Gunji, A., Takeichi, H., Shigemasu, H., Inagaki, M., Kaga, M., and Kitazaki, M. (2012), Audio-vocal monitoring system revealed by mu-rhythm activity, Frontiers in Psychology, 3:225. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2012.00225.


Social cognition, empathy, sympathy, equity, moral

Title of class

Introduction in Cognitive Sciences / Human Information Processing / Virtual Reality and Psychology

Others (Awards, Committees, Board members)

ACE2006 (International Conference on Advances in Computer Entertainment Technology 2006) Outstanding Paper Award(2006)
JVRC2009 (2009 Joint Virtual Reality Conference of EGVE - ICAT - EuroVR) Best Paper Award Honorable Mention(2009年)
Best paper award of Transactions of Virtual Reality Society of Japan (2006, 2010, 2014, 2017)
Best paper award of Japanese Journal of Psychonomic Science (2014)
Best demo award of Augmented Human 2017
SIGGRAPH Asia 2018 Best Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality Award (2018)
Scientific Reports Top 100 in Neuroscience 2018 (2019)

Japan Psychological Association: 2005-now Representative
Virtual Reality Society of Japan: 2011-2014 Executive board member
SIG for Virtual-Reality Psychology: 2009-2011 SIG Chair
SIG for Augmented Cognition Interface: 2018-now SIG Chair

Senior Science and Technology Policy Fellow, Council for Science, Technology and Innovation, Cabinet Office, Government of Japan (2016)

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