Institut des Systèmes Intelligents
et de Robotique


Sorbonne Universite



Tremplin CARNOT Interfaces



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Titre : Prof. Universités Hosp.
Adresse : 4 place Jussieu, CC 173, 75252 Paris cedex 05
Email : dcohen(at)
Equipe : PIRoS (PIRoS)


               David Cohen was born in Paris, 18/9/64, France. He received a M.S. in neurosciences from the University Pierre & Marie Curie (UPMC) and the Ecole Normale Supérieure in 1987, and a M.D. from Necker School of Medicine in 1992. He specialized in child and adolescent psychiatry and certified in 1993. His first field of research was severe mood disorders in adolescent, topic of his Ph D. in neurosciences (2002). He is Professor at the UPMC and head of the department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at La Salpêtrière hospital in Paris. He is also member of the laboratory Institut des Systèmes Intelligents et Robotiques (CNRS UMR 7222).

               His department offers the largest inpatient facilities for adolescents at risk or with psychosis with 50 beds organized in 4 units. It includes also the National Centre for Rare Mental Disorders with Olivier Bonnot, MD, PhD, and Claudine Laurent, MD, PhD. His group runs research programs in the field of pervasive developmental disorder (autism) and learning disabilities, childhood onset schizophrenia, catatonia and severe mood disorder. He supports a developmental and plastic view of child psychopathology, at the level of both understanding and treatment. His team proposes a multidisciplinary approach and therefore collaborates with molecular biologist, methodologist, experimental psychologist, sociologist and engineer. He has published numerous research papers (more than 100 hundred) including some in high impact journals such as the American Journal of Psychiatry, Biological Psychiatry, PlosOne, Psychotherapy & Psychosomatics and the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (see Since the 7th edition, he is in charge of the most famous French text book of child psychiatry, first edited by Daniel Marcelli and Juan Ajuriagera (Enfance et Psychopathologie) that has been translated in several languages.

               He is a member of the International Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines, the European College of Neuro-Psychopharmacology, the European Society of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and the International Society of Adolescent Psychiatry. He was appointed next president of the organizing committee the 2012 congress of the International Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines that will be hold in Paris (21-25 july).

Reasearch activity

               There has been a growing attention towards the development of investigation techniques for a better understanding of child development. Identifying and analysing the social signals exchanged during interaction is challenging. Manual annotation and evaluation are not enough. Indeed, communication is a highly dynamic process and requires specific methods. In the past few years, many attempts have been made to develop computational models for human interaction analysis. Research works done on the emergent domain of social signal processing are dedicated to analysis of human behaviours. While most of the developed methods integrate at different levels knowledge from social sciences, few works have been done on real clinical situations. In the same time, robotics offer a relevant framework for both clinical and assistive applications due to the learning and agentivity skills of robots. They have been intensively employed for the design of socially assistive devices aiming at providing encouragements and helps during complex tasks.

               Our aim is to develop reasearch activities to fill the gap between these communities by gathering researchers and practitioners active in the field of child development, social signal processing and social robotics. We think that joint research across these communities will have a major impact on methodologies, problems and issues related to children with altered development (e.g. Autism Spectrum Disorder) or stressful context (e.g. severe neglect).