Making Sense of Consciousness as Integrated Information: Evolution and Issues of Integrated Information Theory

Volume 20
Issue 1
Kyumin Moon, Hongju Pae
The purpose of this article is to provide an overall critical appraisal of Integrated Information Theory (IIT) of consciousness. We explore how it has evolved and what problems are involved in the theory. IIT is a hypothesis that explains the consciousness in terms of integrated information. It argues that the fundamental properties of experience can be properly analyzed and explained by physical systems’ informational properties. Throughout the last decade, there have been many advances in IIT’s theoretical structure and mathematical model. Also, like all hypotheses in the field of science of consciousness, IIT has given rise to several controversies and issues. In this context, IIT needs a critical survey. To this end, we first introduce fundamental concepts of IIT and related issues. After that, we discuss major transitions IIT has been through and point out related intra-model issues. Finally, in the last section, some theoretical, extra-model issues involved in IIT’s principles are presented. The article concludes by suggesting that, for the sake of future development, IIT should take metacognitive accessibility to experience more seriously.

Keywords: Integrated Information Theory, the science of consciousness, consciousness, experience, qualia, panpsychism, metacognition