Laboratory research grant (06/12/2018)

2018, 2021


Dr Jean-Julien Aucouturier, is the winner of the 2018 Emerging Scientific Prize for fundamental research, and support for the laboratory in 2021.


Laboratory research grant 2021

Project status: active

Aim: To better understand the mechanism underlying prosody impairment in stroke patients and to develop speech therapy interventions.


Professor Jean-Julien Aucouturier
Investigator – Team leader
FEMTO-ST Institute, Besançon, France

Scientific Prize for Fundamental Research 2018

Project status: closed

Psychoacoustics is the study of the relationships between sounds and their perception by the human ear and therefore our capacity to evaluate loudness, detect conversations or sounds in noisy environments, and distinguish the timbre of voices.

Our understanding of hearing is limited to basic auditory perception concepts. It does not include the social dimension of language that enables us to decipher emotions, attitudes and intentions, which are key to social interactions.

The work of Dr. Jean-Julien Aucouturier, a researcher at IRCAM in Paris, aims to decipher emotions in speech and music, using original and innovative approaches.

As a trained electronic engineer (Supélec, Rennes), Jean-Julien Aucouturier is specialized in acoustic signal processing, artificial intelligence and neuroscience.

Currently he is studying how the brain perceives differences between a word spoken in a happy manner and the same word spoken in a sad manner. To do so, he is using software he has developed in the laboratory, which modifies the emotional tone of language in real time.

By designing new tools, Dr. Aucouturier has been able to prove that facial expressions, such as smiling or frowning, have a conscious or unconscious impact on language and auditory perception.

On another project, Dr. Aucouturier is evaluating the ability of stroke patients undergoing speech therapy to differentiate questioning statements from exclamatory statements (e.g. “Really?” vs. “Really!”) and assess their response to rehabilitation therapies.

Dr. Aucouturier’s work is contributing to the emergence of an original new research discipline, social psychoacoustics. It is also leading the way to the development of new-generation hearing aids that can decipher emotions and attitudes in voices, known as cognitive hearing aids, to provide access to more sophisticated social interactions.


Docteur Jean-Julien Aucouturier
IRCAM, Paris, France


Related scientific publication(s):