Neuroscientist and University of Oxford researcher Dr Kathleen Taylor is the latest addition to the line-up of participants at the 2016 Gibunco Gibraltar International Literary Festival.

Dr Taylor, a noted expert on the workings of the brain, will be discussing various issues including dementia.

She studied physiology and philosophy at the University of Oxford and then completed post-doctoral studies in visual and cognitive neuroscience. In 2012 she was appointed as a Science Fellow of the Institute for Food, Brain and Behaviour. In 2003 Dr Taylor won first prize in both The Times Higher Education Supplement/Oxford University Press Science Essay competition and the THES Humanities and Social Sciences Writing Prize.

She has also published two books, Brainwashing: The Science of Thought Control (2005) which explored the science behind the persuasive tactics of such groups as cults and al Qaeda, and The Brain Supremacy (2012), an overview of the latest advances in neuroscience, the practical and ethical side of new technologies, and how these could affect our behaviour and daily lives in future. She has also written widely on other topics from consciousness to cruelty.

Dr Taylor obtained media attention in 2013 when she suggested that religious fundamentalism and even violent conduct could be treated as curable mental disorders in the future.

Minister for Tourism, Samantha Sacramento, welcomed Dr Taylor’s addition to the programme. “Not only does the Literary Festival provide us with an excellent programme of interesting talks but it also provides variety. It is hugely important that we should also feature topical issues like mental health, particularly dementia.

We are fortunate in having a qualified voice like Dr Taylor analysing these challenging issues, which modern societies need to confront and tackle in a decisive fashion. I look forward to the excellent programme of talks that has been put together this year for the literary festival.”