Clark School Home UMD

Return to Faculty Directory

Simon, Jonathan

Associate Professor
2209 A.V. Williams Building

Research Interests 

Auditory neural computations and representations, magnetoencephalography and cortical physiology, signal processing in biological systems, computational and theoretical neuroscience.



Jonathan Simon joined the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department in January '01 and the Biology Department in July '02. He was an affiliate faculty member of the Institute for Systems Research until 2013, when he received an ISR joint appointment. His expertise is applied and theoretical neuroscience. He earned his doctorate in physics from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and did postdoctoral research in theoretical general relativity (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and University of Maryland-College Park) before embracing the field of neuroscience.

Simon is co-director of the Computational Sensorimotor Systems Laboratory (CSSL) with ECE/ISR professor Timothy Horiuchi. CSSL focuses on the investigation, modeling and implementation of biological sensorimotor systems for both scientific and engineering purposes. Simon's research focuses on neural processing in the brain's auditory system, from specialized processing found only in humans (used in speech processing) to generalized processing found in most mammals, including sound localization.

Selected Publications 

Xiang J., D. Poeppel, and J. Z. Simon (2013), Physiological evidence for auditory modulation filterbanks: cortical responses to concurrent modulations, JASA Express Letters 133(1), EL7-EL12.
Ding, N. and J. Z. Simon (2012) The Emergence of Neural Encoding of Auditory Objects While Listening to Competing Speakers, PNAS, 109(29), 11854-11859.
Ding, N. and J. Z. Simon (2012) Power and Phase Properties of Oscillatory Neural Responses in the Presence of Background Activity, J Comput Neurosci DOI: 10.1007/s10827-012-0424-6.
Zhuo, J., S. Xu, J. Hazelton, R. J. Mullins, J. Z. Simon, G. Fiskum, and R. P. Gullapalli (2012) Diffusion Kurtosis as an in vivo imaging marker for reactive astrogliosis in traumatic brain injury, NeuroImage 59(1) 467-477.
Xiang J., J. Z. Simon and M. Elhilali (2010), Competing streams at the cocktail party: Exploring the mechanisms of attention and temporal integration, J Neurosci  30(36) 12084-12093.
Chait, M., A. de Cheveigné, D. Poeppel and J. Z. Simon (2010) Neural dynamics of attending and ignoring in human auditory cortex, Neuropsychologia 48(11) 3262-3271.
Elhilali, M.*, J. Xiang*, S. A. Shamma and J. Z. Simon (2009), Interaction between attention and bottom-up saliency mediates the representation of foreground and background in an auditory scene, PLoS Biol 7(6), e1000129. *contributed equally
Carr, C. E., D. Soares, J. Smolders and J. Z. Simon (2009), Detection of interaural time differences in the alligator, J Neurosci 29, 7948-7956.
Aytekin, M., C. F. Moss and J. Z. Simon (2008) A Sensorimotor Approach to Sound Localization, Neural Computation, 20, 603-635.
de Cheveigné, A., and J. Z. Simon (2008) Denoising based on spatial filtering, J Neurosci Methods 171(1), 331-339.
de Cheveigné, A., and J. Z. Simon (2007) Denoising Based on Time-Shift PCA, J Neurosci Methods 165(2), 297-305. 
Simon, J. Z., D.A. Depireux, D. J. Klein, J.B. Fritz and S.A. Shamma (2007), Temporal Symmetry in Primary Auditory Cortex: Implications for Cortical Connectivity, Neural Computation, 19, 583-638.
Chait, M., D. Poeppel and J. Z. Simon (2006), Neural Response Correlates of Detection of Monaurally and Binaurally-Created Pitches in Humans, Cerebral Cortex, 16(6), 835-848.
Simon, J. Z. and Y. Wang (2005), Fully Complex Magnetoencephalography, J Neurosci Methods 149(1), 64-73. 
Grau-Serrat, V., C. E. Carr and J. Z. Simon (2003), Modeling Coincidence Detection in Nucleus Laminaris, Biol Cybern. 89, 388-96. 
Depireux D. A., J. Z. Simon, D. J. Klein and S. A. Shamma (2001), Spectro-Temporal Response Field Characterization With Dynamic Ripples in Ferret Primary Auditory Cortex, J Neurophysiol 85,1220-1234. 
Simon, J. Z. (1994), The Physics of Time Travel, Physics World 7:12, 27. 
Friedman, J. L., N. J. Papastamatiou, and J. Z. Simon (1992), Failure of Unitarity for Interacting Fields on Spacetimes with Closed Timelike Curves, Phys. Rev. D 46, 4456.
Simon, J. Z. (1990), Higher-derivative Lagrangians, Nonlocality, Problems, and Solutions, Phys. Rev. D 41, 3720.
Gott J. R., III,  J. Z. Simon, and M. Alpert (1986), General Relativity in a (2+1)-Dimensional Space-Time: An Electrically Charged Solution, Gen. Rel. Grav. 18, 1019.

Related News 

Simon, Ding, Chatterjee publish paper in NeuroImage
Research explores how brains extract and process speech in noisy conditions. February 1, 2014

‘Cocktail party effect’ helps us focus in noisy environments
New research published in Neuron shows cooperation among brain's neural responses. March 7, 2013

Simon is invited speaker at otolaryngology meeting
He will speak on 'cortical encoding of auditory objects at the cocktail party.' January 14, 2013

Simon, Ding publish auditory cortex research in PNAS
Research addresses the neural underpinnings of auditory scene analysis. July 2, 2012

Jonathan Simon selected for National Academies' NAKFI conference
Conference focuses neuroscience on challenges and opportunities of the digitally connected world. June 1, 2012

Jonathan Simon lead author of article published in PLoS Biology
Research focuses on the cognitive process of attention in a complex auditory scene. July 14, 2009

ISR awards ceremony honors faculty, graduate student, staff member
Five individuals honored for outstanding contributions in 2008–2009. June 24, 2009

Abshire, Cukier, Simon earn tenure
The three ISR faculty members are promoted to the rank of Associate Professor. April 29, 2008

Aytekin, Moss, Simon author Neural Computation cover story
Trio writes on "A Sensorimotor Approach to Sound Localization." March 21, 2008

ISR faculty host CRCNS Principal Investigators' Meeting
Event at University of Maryland draws 130 participants. June 7, 2007

Shamma, Simon, Fritz receive five-year, $1.57 million NIH grant
Research to focus on neural correlates of streaming of complex sounds June 8, 2006

Simon research featured on Cerebral Cortex cover
MEG-psychophysical study impresses respected, selective journal May 19, 2006

Moss is PI for "Innovative Technologies Inspired by Biosonar"
Research will study transformation of sensory information to motor commands for adaptive behaviors. September 8, 2004