Perceptual Organization of Moving Stimuli Modulates the Flash-Lag Effect

Katsumi Watanabe*, Romi Nijhawan, Beena Khurana, Shinsuke Shimojo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


When a visual stimulus is flashed at a given location the moment a second moving stimulus arrives at the same location, observers report the flashed stimulus as spatially lagging behind the moving stimulus (the flash-lag effect). The authors investigated whether the global configuration (perceptual organization) of the moving stimulus influences the magnitude of the flash-lag effect. The results indicate that a flash presented near the leading portion of a moving stimulus lags significantly more than a flash presented near the trailing portion. This result also holds for objects consisting of several elements that group to form a unitary percept of an object in motion. The present study demonstrates a novel interaction between the global configuration of moving objects and the representation of their spatial position and may provide a new and useful tool for the study of perceptual organization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)879-894
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2001 Jan 1
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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