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Cristina Becchio

Senior Researcher - Principal Investigator
Senior Researcher ERC

Research Line

Cognition, Motion and Neuroscience


IIT Central Research Labs Genova


+39 010 2897 203
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Cristina Becchio is Senior Researcher at the Italian Institute of Technology (C'MON Unit), Genova, and Professor at the Psychology Department, University of Turin. After studying philosophy at the University of Turin, in 2001 she joined a PhD Program in Cognitive Science. In 2004 she moved on to a post-doctoral work on cognitive neuroscience and has since then been working on motor cognition. Her research focuses on the control and perception of complex body motion during human social interaction, specifically upon the ability to decode others'  mental states from movement observation.  In 2013 she started as Principal Investigator a five year project on “Intention-from-movement understanding” (I Move U) funded by the ERC, ERC-St-2012. 

Selected Publications


Cavallo, A., Ansuini, C., Capozzi, F., Tversky, B., Becchio, C. (ahead of print)
When far becomes near: perspective taking induces social remapping of spatial relations.
Psychological Science, Nov 18., doi: 10.1177/0956797616672464

Cavallo, A., Koul, A., Ansuini, C., Capozzi, F., Becchio, C. (2016)
Decoding intentions from movement kinematics.
Scientific reports, Nov 15;6:37036. doi: 10.1038/srep37036.

Koul, A., Cavallo, A., Ansuini, C., Becchio C. (2016)
Doing it your way: how individual movement styles affect action prediction.
PLoS One, Oct 25;11(10):e0165297.
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0165297.

Ansuini, C., Cavallo, A., Campus, C., Quarona, D., Koul A., Becchio C. (2016)
Are we real when we fake? Attunement to object weight in natural and pantomimed grasping movements.
Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 10, 471, doi: 10.3389/fnhum.2016.00471

Ansuini*, C., Cavallo*, A., Koul, A., D’Ausilio, A., Taverna, L., & Becchio, C. (2016).
Grasping others’ movements: rapid discrimination of objects size from observed hand movements.
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 42(7), 918-29.
doi: 10.1037/xhp0000169.

von der Lühe T.*, Manera V.*, Barisic I., Becchio C., Vogeley K., Schilbach L. (2016).
Interpersonal predictive coding, not action perception is impaired in autism.
Philosophical Transactions B of the Royal Society, 371, 1-8.
doi: 10.1098/rstb.2015.0373.

Capozzi, F., Becchio, C., Willemse, C., Bayliss, AP. (2016)
Followers are not followed: Observed group interactions modulate subsequent social attention.
Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 145(5):531-5. doi: 10.1037/xge0000167.

Ansuini, C, Cavallo, A, Pia, L, & Becchio, C. (2016).
The role of perspective in mental time travel.
Neural Plasticity. 2016:3052741. doi: 10.1155/2016/3052741.

Capozzi, F, Becchio, C, Garbarini, F, Savazzi, S, & Pia, L. (2016). 
Temporal perception in joint action: this is MY action.
Consciousness and Cognition, 40, 26-33. doi: 10.1016/j.concog.2015.12.004

Furlanetto T., Becchio C., Samson D., & Apperly, I. (2016).
Altercentric interference in level 1 visual perspective taking reflects the ascription of mental states, not submentalizing. 
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 42(2), 158-163. doi: 10.1037/xhp0000138.

Manera, V., von der Lühe, T., Schilbach, L., Verfaillie, K., Becchio, C. (2016)
Communicative interactions in point-light displays: Choosing among multiple response alternatives.
Behavior Research Methods, 48(4):1580-1590. doi: 10.3758/s13428-015-0669-x



Sciutti A., Ansuini C., Becchio C., & Sandini G. (2015).
Investigating the ability to read others’ intentions using humanoid robots. 
Frontiers in Psychology, 6

Cavallo A., Lungu O., Becchio C., Ansuini C., Rustichini A., & Fadiga L. (2015).
When gaze opens the channel for communication: integrative role of IFG and MPFC. 
Neuroimage, 119, 63-69

Cavallo A., Ansuini C., & Becchio C. (2015).
The (un)coupling between action execution and observation. 
Phisics of life reviews, 12, 129

Capozzi F., Bayliss A.P., Elena M.R., & Becchio C. (2015).
One is not enough: Group size modulates social gaze-induced object desirability effects. 
Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 22 (3), 850-855

Ansuini C., Cavallo A., Koul A., Jacono M., Yang Y., & Becchio C. (2015).
Predicting object size from hand kinematics: a temporal perspective. 
PLoS One, 10(3), e0120432

Ansuini C., Cavallo A., Bertone C., & Becchio C. (2015).
Intentions in the brain: The unveiling of Mister Hyde. 
The Neuroscientist, 21(2), 126-135

Capozzi F., Tirassa M., & Becchio C. (2015).
Beyond dyads: The study of social cognition from labs to organizations. (in Italian)
Sistemi intelligenti, 27(1), 45-60.

Okruszek Ł., Haman M., Kalinowski K., Talarowska M., Becchio C., & Manera V. (2015).
Impaired recognition of communicative interactions from biological motion in schizophrenia. 
PLoS One, 10, e0116793.


Capozzi F., Cavallo A., Furlanetto T., & Becchio C. (2014).
Altercentric intrusions from multiple perspectives: Beyond dyads. 
PLoS One, 9, e114210.

Ansuini C., Cavallo A., Bertone C., & Becchio C. (2014).
The visible face of intention: why kinematics matters. 
Frontiers in Psychology, 5, 815.

Becchio C., Zanatto D., Straulino E., Cavallo A. , Sartori G., Castiello C. (2014).
The kinematic signature of voluntary actions. 
Neuropsychologia, 64, 169-175.

Cavallo A., Catmur C., Sowden S., Ianì F., & Becchio C. (2014).
Stopping movements: when others slow us down. 
European Journal of Neuroscience, 40, 2842-2849.

Cavallo A., Heyes C., Becchio C., Bird G., & Catmur C. (2014).
Timecourse of mirror and counter-mirror effects measured with transcranial magnetic stimulation. 
Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 9, 1082-1088.

Ciaramidaro A., Becchio C., Colle L., Bara B.G., & Walter H. (2014).
Communicative intentions recruit the mirror and the mentalizing system. 
Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 9, 909-916.

Furlanetto T., Gallace A., Ansuini C., & Becchio C. (2014).
Effects of arm crossing on spatial perspective taking. 
PLoS ONE, 9, e95748.

Manera V., Elena M.R., Bayliss A.P., & Becchio C. (2014).
When seeing is more than looking: Intentional gaze modulates object desirability. 
Emotion, 14, 824-832.


Becchio, C., Del Giudice, M., Dal Monte, O., Latini-Corazzini, L., & Pia, L. (2013).
In your place: Neuropsychological evidence for altercentric remapping in embodied perspective taking. 
Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 8, 165-170.
Download PDF
Supplementary material: Download PDF

Cavallo A., Bucchioni G., Castiello U., & Becchio C. (2013).
Goal or movement? Action representation within the primary motor cortex. 
European Journal of Neuroscience, 38, 3507-3512.

Furlanetto T., Cavallo A., Manera V., Tversky B., & Becchio C. (2013).
Through your eyes: Incongruence of gaze and action increases spontaneous perspective. 
Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7, 455.

Furlanetto, T., Bertone, C., & Becchio, C. (2013).
The bilocated mind: new perspectives on self location and self identification.
Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7, 71.

Manera V., Schouten B., Verfaillie K., & Becchio C. (2013).
Time will show: Real time predictions during interpersonal action perception. 
PLoS One, 8, e54949.


Becchio C. & Castiello U. (2012).
Visuomotor resonance in autism spectrum disorders. 
Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience, 6, 110.

Becchio C., Cavallo A., Begliomini C., Sartori L., Feltrin G., & Castiello U. (2012).
Social grasping: from mirroring to mentalizing. 
NeuroImage, 61, 240-248.

Becchio C., Manera V., Sartori L., Cavallo A., & Castiello U. (2012).
Grasping intentions: from thought experiments to empirical evidence. 
Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 6, 117.

Cavallo, A., Becchio, C., Sartori, L., Bucchioni, G., & Castiello, U. (2012).
Grasping with Tools: Corticospinal excitability reflects observed hand movements. 
Cerebral Cortex, 22, 710-716.

Manera V., Cavallo A., Chiavarino C., Schouten B., Verfaillie K., & Becchio C. (2012).
Are you approaching me? Motor execution influences perceived action orientation. 
PLoS One, 7, e37514.


Becchio, C., Skewes, J., Lund, T. E., Frith, U., Frith, C. D., & Roepstorff, A. (2011).
How the brain responds to the destruction of money. 
Journal of Neuroscience, Psychology and Economics, 4, 1-10.

Manera, V., Becchio, C., Cavallo, A., Sartori, L., & Castiello, U. (2011).
Cooperation or competition? Discriminating between social intentions by observing prehensile movements. 
Experimental Brain Research, 211, 547-556.

Manera, V., Becchio C., Schouten, B., Bara, B. G., & Verfaillie, K. (2011).
Communicative interactions improve visual detection of biological motion.
PLoS ONE, 6, e14594.

Manera, V., Del Giudice, M., Bara, B.G., Verfaillie, K., & Becchio, C. (2011).
The second-agent effect: Communicative gestures increase the likelihood of perceiving a second agent.
PLoS ONE, 6, e22650.

Sartori, L., Becchio, C., & Castiello, U. (2011).
Cues to intention: the role of movement information. 
Cognition, 119, 242-252.


Becchio, C., Mari, M., & Castiello, U. (2010).
Perception of shadows in children with autism spectrum disorders. 
PLoS ONE, 5, e10582.

Becchio, C., Sartori, L., & Castiello, U. (2010).
Towards you: the social side of actions.
Current Directions in Psychological Science, 19, 183-188.

Castiello, U., Becchio, C., Zoia, S., Nelini, C., Sartori, L., Blason, L., et al. (2010).
Wired to be social: The ontogeny of human interaction.
PLoS ONE, 5, e13199.

Manera, V., Shouten, B., Becchio, C., Bara, B. G., & Verfaillie, K. (2010).
Inferring intentions from biological motion: A stimulus set of point-light communicative interactions.
Behavior Research Methods, 42, 168-178.


Sartori, L., Becchio, C., Bara, B. G., & Castiello, U. (2009).
Does the intention to communicate affect action kinematics?
Consciousness and cognition, 18, 766-772.

Sartori, L., Becchio, C., Bulgheroni, M., & Castiello, U. (2009).
Modulation of the action control system by social intention: unexpected social requests override preplanned action.
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 35, 1490-1500.


Becchio, C., Bertone, C., & Castiello, U. (2008).
How the gaze of others influences object processing.
Trends in Cognitive Science, 12, 254-258.

Becchio, C., Sartori, L., Bulgheroni, M., & Castiello, U. (2008).
The case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde: A kinematic study on social intention.
Consciousness and cognition, 17, 557-564.

Colle, L., Becchio, C., & Bara, B. G. (2008).
The non-problem of other minds: a neuro-developmental perspective on shared intentionality. 
Human Development, 51, 336-348.

Pierno, A. C., Becchio, C., Tubaldi, F., Turella, L., & Castiello, U. (2008).
Motor ontology in representing gaze-object relations. 
Neuroscience Letters, 430, 246-51.

Pierno, A. C., Becchio, C., Turella, L., Tubaldi, F., & Castiello, U. (2008).
Observing social interactions: The effect of gaze. 
Social Neuroscience, 3, 51-59.

Becchio, C., Sartori, L., Bulgheroni, M., & Castiello, U. (2008).
Both your intention and mine are reflected in the kinematics of my reach-to-grasp movement. 
Cognition, 106, 894-912.


Becchio, C., Pierno, A. C., Mari, M., Lusher, D., & Castiello, U. (2007).
Motor contagion from gaze: the case of autism. 
Brain, 130, 2401-2411.

Georgiou, I., Becchio, C., Glover, S., & Castiello, U. (2007).
Different action patterns for cooperative and competitive behaviour.
Cognition, 102, 415-433.


Becchio, C., & Bertone, C. (2006).
Time and neglect: Abnormal temporal dynamics in unilateral spatial neglect. 
Neuropsychologia, 44, 2775-2782.

Pierno, A. C., Becchio, C., Wall, M. B., Smith, A. T., & Castiello, U. (2006).
Transfer of interfered motor patterns to self from others. 
European Journal of Neuroscience, 23, 1949-1955.

Pierno, A. C., Becchio, C., Wall, M. B., Smith, A. T., Turella, L., & Castiello, U. (2006).
When Gaze Turns into Grasp. 
Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 18, 2130-2137.

Becchio, C., Adenzato, M., & Bara, B. G. (2006).
How the brain understands intentions: Different neural circuits identify the componential features of motor and prior intentions. 
Consciousness and Cognition, 15, 64-74.


Becchio, C., & Bertone, C. (2005).
Beyond Cartesian Subjectivism: Neural Correlates of Shared Intentionality.
Journal of Consciousness studies, 12, 20-30.

Becchio, C., & Bertone, C. (2005).
The ontology of neglect. 
Consciousness and Cognition, 14, 483-494.


Becchio, C., & Bertone, C. (2004).
Wittgenstein running: Neural mechanisms of collective intentionality and we-mode. 
Consciousness and Cognition, 13, 123-133.


Becchio, C., & Bertone, C. (2003).
Object temporal connotation. 
Brain and Cognition, 52, 192-196.


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Accetta e chiudi

I numeri di IIT

L’Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) è una fondazione di diritto privato - cfr. determinazione Corte dei Conti 23/2015 “IIT è una fondazione da inquadrare fra gli organismi di diritto pubblico con la scelta di un modello di organizzazione di diritto privato per rispondere all’esigenza di assicurare procedure più snelle nella selezione non solo nell’ambito nazionale dei collaboratori, scienziati e ricercatori ”.

IIT è sotto la vigilanza del Ministero dell'Istruzione, dell'Università e della Ricerca e del Ministero dell'Economia e delle Finanze ed è stato istituito con la Legge 326/2003. La Fondazione ha l'obiettivo di promuovere l'eccellenza nella ricerca di base e in quella applicata e di favorire lo sviluppo del sistema economico nazionale. La costruzione dei laboratori iniziata nel 2006 si è conclusa nel 2009.

Lo staff complessivo di IIT conta circa 1440 persone. L’area scientifica è rappresentata da circa l’85% del personale. Il 45% dei ricercatori proviene dall’estero: di questi, il 29% è costituito da stranieri provenienti da oltre 50 Paesi e il 16% da italiani rientrati. Oggi il personale scientifico è composto da circa 60 principal investigators, circa 110 ricercatori e tecnologi di staff, circa 350 post doc, circa 500 studenti di dottorato e borsisti, circa 130 tecnici. Oltre 330 posti su 1400 creati su fondi esterni. Età media 34 anni. 41% donne / 59 % uomini.

Nel 2015 IIT ha ricevuto finanziamenti pubblici per circa 96 milioni di euro (80% del budget), conseguendo fondi esterni per 22 milioni di euro (20% budget) provenienti da 18 progetti europei17 finanziamenti da istituzioni nazionali e internazionali, circa 60 progetti industriali

La produzione di IIT ad oggi vanta circa 6990 pubblicazioni, oltre 130 finanziamenti Europei e 11 ERC, più di 350 domande di brevetto attive, oltre 12 start up costituite e altrettante in fase di lancio. Dal 2009 l’attività scientifica è stata ulteriormente rafforzata con la creazione di dieci centri di ricerca nel territorio nazionale (a Torino, Milano, Trento, Parma, Roma, Pisa, Napoli, Lecce, Ferrara) e internazionale (MIT ed Harvard negli USA) che, unitamente al Laboratorio Centrale di Genova, sviluppano i programmi di ricerca del piano scientifico 2015-2017.

IIT: the numbers

Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) is a public research institute that adopts the organizational model of a private law foundation. IIT is overseen by Ministero dell'Istruzione, dell'Università e della Ricerca and Ministero dell'Economia e delle Finanze (the Italian Ministries of Education, Economy and Finance).  The Institute was set up according to Italian law 326/2003 with the objective of promoting excellence in basic and applied research andfostering Italy’s economic development. Construction of the Laboratories started in 2006 and finished in 2009.

IIT has an overall staff of about 1,440 people. The scientific staff covers about 85% of the total. Out of 45% of researchers coming from abroad 29% are foreigners coming from more than 50 countries and 16% are returned Italians. The scientific staff currently consists of approximately 60 Principal Investigators110 researchers and technologists350 post-docs and 500 PhD students and grant holders and 130 technicians. External funding has allowed the creation of more than 330 positions . The average age is 34 and the gender balance proportion  is 41% female against 59% male.

In 2015 IIT received 96 million euros in public funding (accounting for 80% of its budget) and obtained 22 million euros in external funding (accounting for 20% of its budget). External funding comes from 18 European Projects, other 17 national and international competitive projects and approximately 60 industrial projects.

So far IIT accounts for: about 6990 publications, more than 130 European grants and 11 ERC grants, more than 350 patents or patent applications12 up start-ups and as many  which are about to be launched. The Institute’s scientific activity has been further strengthened since 2009 with the establishment of 11 research nodes throughout Italy (Torino, Milano, Trento, Parma, Roma, Pisa, Napoli, Lecce, Ferrara) and abroad (MIT and Harvard University, USA), which, along with the Genoa-based Central Lab, implement the research programs included in the 2015-2017 Strategic Plan.