Joint Action: Mental Representations, Shared Information and General Mechanisms for Coordinating with Others

Front Psychol. 2017 Jan 4;7:2039. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2016.02039. eCollection 2016.


In joint action, multiple people coordinate their actions to perform a task together. This often requires precise temporal and spatial coordination. How do co-actors achieve this? How do they coordinate their actions toward a shared task goal? Here, we provide an overview of the mental representations involved in joint action, discuss how co-actors share sensorimotor information and what general mechanisms support coordination with others. By deliberately extending the review to aspects such as the cultural context in which a joint action takes place, we pay tribute to the complex and variable nature of this social phenomenon.

Keywords: action prediction; coordination; culture; joint action; joint attention; sensorimotor communication; social interaction.

Publication types

  • Review