The first edition of Brainhack Donostia was held in May 2018 at the Basque Center on Cognition, Brain and Language (BCBL), a world-class interdisciplinary research center located in Donostia-San Sebastian, Spain. For three days, attendees from all over Europe worked together and learned about various neuroimaging tools and software for data handling (involving data preprocessing, analysis, and presentation). Specialized talks on how to process and analyze MRI, MEG and NIRS data using state-of-the-art tools were complemented by hands-on tutorials where attendees were able to put these procedures into practice. Despite being a pilot experience, Brainhack Donostia 2018 was a success. We hosted 50 attendees from across Europe, and participants’ feedback after the event was positive.

The second edition was an even greater success, with more than 70 participants! The challenge of Brainhack Donostia 2019 was to improve the development of projects in order to generate collaborations that would continue beyond the event. For the first time, we had two international speakers: Dimitri Van De Ville and Matteo Bastiani. Our guest speakers brought new experiences and knowledge to the table, contributing to our goal of promoting and sharing knowledge in an open and transparent way between disciplines and specialties, as well as to the development of open source tools.

Despite the challenges of 2020 we continued to work to organize the very first virtual edition of BrainHack Donostia. This new online format allowed us to reach more participants and invited speakers than ever before. Last year’s event counted with more than 100 participants from all over the world, and focused primarily on four main areas of interest: functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), magnetoencephalography (MEG), diffusion imaging (DTI), and Open Science.


Irene Arrieta

Chair of BHD 2021. She is interested in sound perception in the hearing impaired, from the psychoacoustic and developmental points of view. Focused on predicting Cochlear implantation outcomes in babies. Music perception should be a right for everybody!

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Chiara Luna Rivolta

Chair of BHD 2021. PhD student @ BCBL with a background in psychology and cognitive science. Now she investigates how modality shapes perception and production of language, through the comparison of spoken and signed languages.

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Eneko Uruñuela

Ex-chair of BHD. PhD student @ BCBL and biomedical engineer. His research focuses on the development of deconvolution methods for fMRI. As a proper engineer, he’s a computer/phone/tech/programming geek. He also loves hiking (especially at sunset) and photography, and is into playing the electric guitar. Finally, he’s a big (not so) secret fan of the 80s.

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Hülya Aldemir

Ex-research trainee @ BCBL, now a PhD student @ University of Seville. Her ongoing research life revolves around psycholinguistics - and currently works on helping vocabulary growth for deaf children and adolescents as a part of a MSCA ITN team, “Early Language Development in the Digital Age”. She fancies napping and tweeting.

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Karen Arellano

PhD student @ BCBL with a background in Linguistics and Language Teaching Methodology. Her current research focuses on the mechanisms of language recovery and other domain-general abilities after stroke.

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César Caballero-Gaudes

César likes developing new signal processing algorithms and imaging methods to understand human brain function, mainly using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Lately, he has been interested in novel analyses of dynamic functional connectivity and multi-echo functional MRI. If he finds you around, he might invite you to participate in one of his MRI studies with highly-sampled individuals. Apart from research, he tries to be a good father and an appropriate mentor for his students.

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Amaia Carrión

Postdoctoral researcher @ BCBL. Trying to understand how genetics shapes our ability to speak and read, with the brain in its way!

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Inés Chavarría

PhD student @ BCBL, currently working on fMRI sequence development but interested in most engineering aspects of the MRI. My interests outside work are even wider: volleyball, crochet, art, Stephen King, board games, climbing, chocolate, traveling… and, of course, I do enjoy a little bit of programming!

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Florent Dueme

PhD student @ BCBL. He is a former French teacher and interpreter. Interested in phonetic transfer between a bilingual’s two languages and uses mostly behavioural techniques and acoustic analysis. Outside the lab, he likes reading, learning new languages, and doing sports.

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Laura Fernandez-Merino

PhD student @ BCBL studying cortical tracking of speech and music in bilingual infants, and its role in language acquisition and speech perception. When she is not surfing brain waves in the BabyLab, she likes surfing real waves and playing piano.

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Vicente Ferrer

PhD student @BCBL and IT department chief at Brainhack Donostia, focused on Cognition in Parkinson’s disease. Also a bit of a geek with computers and programming. Loves surfing, hiking, and of course watching TV series. If you have any IT problems I can send one of my minions.

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Alberto Furgoni

PhD candidate @ BCBL with a background in applied linguistics and, consequently, language freak. His current research aims at better understanding the relationship between orthography and phonemic representations by means of behavioral methods. In his free time, he enjoys cooking and planning trips he cannot go on.

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Garikoitz Lerma-Usabiaga

He is interested in using behavioral, functional, and structural MRI techniques to investigate the neural basis of vision and reading, and in the development of quantitative methods to enhance neuroimaging reproducibility and clinical application. Currently, he is in his third year at Stanford University working on population receptive fields, diffusion MRI, and single-subject quantification methods to better understand and characterize reading in proficient and poor readers.

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Lucía Manso

PhD candidate @BCBL interested in the organization of neural networks, brain plasticity related to life changing events (learning a new language or even undergoing surgery) and computational neuroscience. When not at the lab she enjoys cooking and hiking.

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Piermatteo Morucci

He is interested in how the brain implements semantic composition, abstract knowledge, and conscious perception. In his experiments, he uses behavioral, EEG, and MEG measures, sometimes simultaneously.

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Jose Pérez-Navarro

He is a predoctoral researcher at the Developmental Language Disorders group of the BCBL. He works on phonological and broader language development using behavioral and electrophysiological techniques. He is particularly interested in projects that, like Brainhack, make scientific work more collaborative and transparent.

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Abraham Sánchez

PhD student @ BCBL. Mainly interested in memory processes and how the brain establishes concepts from percepts.

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Manuel Carreiras

Ikerbasque Research Professor and Scientific Director @ BCBL. Working on research for over 30 years, he has lots of experience in psycho and neurolinguistics.

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We thank everyone who helped organize the previous edition of BrainHack Donostia!