Coma Science Group

FNRS Research Director & Director of the GIGA-Consciousness

Steven Laureys


MD, PhD, leads the Coma Science Group at the GIGA (ULg) and Department of Neurology, Sart Tilman Liège University Hospital

Steven is Clinical Professor (ULg) and Research Director (tenure) at the Belgian National Fund of Scientific Research (FNRS). He graduated as a Medical Doctor from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel Belgium, in 1993. While specializing in Neurology he entered a research career and obtained his M.Sc. in Pharmaceutical Medicine working on pain and stroke using in vivo microdialysis and diffusion MRI in the rat (1997). Drawn by functional neuroimaging, he moved to the Cyclotron Research Center at the University of Liège, Belgium, where he obtained his Ph.D. (2000) and his “thèse d’agrégation de l’enseignement supérieur” (2007) studying residual brain function in coma, vegetative, minimally conscious and locked-in states . 

He is board-certified in neurology (1998) and in palliative and end-of-life medicine (2004) and presently is invited professor at the Collège Belgique (Belgian Royal Academy of Sciences) and chair of the “European Neurological Society Subcommittee on Coma and disorders of consciousness”.

A recipient of the William James Prize (2004) from the Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness (ASSC) and the Cognitive Neuroscience Society (CNS) Young Investigator Award (2007), he published several books: The Neurology of Consciousness (with Giulio Tononi, Academic Press,2008); Coma Science (with Adrian Owen et Nicholas Schiff; Elsevier 2009); Disorders of Consciousness (with Nicholas Schiff, Wiley, 2009) and The Boundaries of Consciousness (Elsevier, 2005).

He is a member of the American Academy of Neurology Committee for the Development of Practice Guidelines for the Vegetative and Minimally Conscious State (2007) (Robert G. Holloway, Dan Larriviere, Michael A. Williams), is Honorary International Fellow of the Royal Hospital of Neuro-disability, London, UK (Keith Andrews) and was invited member of the 2004 Congress on Life-Sustaining Treatments in the Vegetative State organized by the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Life (Gian Luigi Gigli) and the 2006 Mohonk Consensus Meeting for the US Congressional Report on Disorders of Consciousness (Joseph Giacino).