About me

CNRS researcher at École Normale Superieure Paris (Laboratoire des Système Perceptifs, UMR 8248) working on hearing and speech, with an emphasis on the interface between the two. I have a strong interest in the development of statistical/signal processing techniques for research in audition. My work currently focuses on the exploration of cognitive mechanisms underlying the conversion of speech sounds into phonemic percepts (ACI project), and on the study of amplitude and frequency modulations perception by the auditory system in humans (MFB project), with a particular emphasis on the effects of hearing loss.

Je suis Chargé de Recherche au CNRS, affilié au Laboratoire des Système Perceptifs de l’École Normale Superieure Paris. Je m’intéresse principalement à la perception auditive (sons paroliers et non-paroliers) et au développement de techniques statistiques et de traitement de signal pour la recherche. Mes travaux portent principalement sur l’étude des processus cognitifs permettant la compréhension des phonèmes, ainsi que sur la perception des modulations d’amplitude et des modulations de fréquence par le système auditif chez les personnes normo-entendantes et malentendantes.


Email : leo.varnet [at] ens.psl.eu

LinkedIn, ResearchGate, Google Scholar, Twitter, Wikipédia, HAL, ORCID, Publons


Current position:

Chargé de Recherche CNRS (section 34, Linguistics) at the Laboratoire des Systèmes Perceptifs (UMR 8248), ENS-PSL


2012 – 2015    PhD in Cognitive Sciences (funded by the Neurosciences and Cognition Doctoral School) at the Institut des Sciences Cognitives (Lyon). Thesis title: “Identification of acoustic cues used in degraded speech comprehension”. Supervisors: M. Hoen & F. Meunier.
2010 – 2011    Master’s Degree in Cognitive Science in Grenoble (Grenoble INP, Joseph Fourier University)
2008 – 2011    Signal Processing Engineer: student in the engineer school Phelma, Grenoble INP, specialization in « Signal and Image Processing, Communication Systems, Multimedia»
2006 – 2008    Preparatory classes for admission to the French « Grandes Ecoles », in mathematics and physics
2006                    Baccalauréat S (High School Diploma in Sciences)

Previous positions:

2018 – 2019    Honorary Researcher at the University College of London, department SHaPS. Collaboration with S. Rosen and V. Hazan.
2016 – 2018   
Postdoctoral fellow at ENS Paris under the supervision of C. Lorenzi (Laboratoire des Systèmes Perceptifs). Collaboration with Starkey Hearing Technologies.
2015 – 2016   
Postdoctoral fellow at ENS Paris under the supervision of C. Lorenzi (Laboratoire des Systèmes Perceptifs). Collaboration with the Laboratoire Psychologie de la Perception (Paris).
One-year CNRS engineer position at the Lyon Neuroscience Research Center, Brain Dynamics and Cognition Team (dir. O. Bertrand)
2011                    6-month end-of-studies
internship in the SpiN Project Team in Lyon (dir. M. Hoen and F. Meunier)
2010                    3-month internship at GIPSA-lab in Grenoble (dir. M. Congedo and B. Rivet)


2019 – ….           Teaching at Le Mans Université: Perception et psychoacoustique (level: M2)
2018 – 2019    Teacher assistant in charge of lab tutorials in UCL: Speech production and perception
2012 – 2015   
Teacher assistant in charge of tutorials in Polytech Lyon: C++ programming, statistics, bibliographic research, and speech processing

Scientific events organization:

2022                   Organizing the 2nd AMT Workshop in Paris « Introduction to auditory modelling using the AMT toolbox »
2019                   Organizing the 2-day European conference ARCHES in Paris
2018                   Organizing the “Wikipedia project for Hearing sciences: Concepts of temporal envelope and temporal fine structure”, 2-day scientific workshop in Paris

Scientific commitments:

2021 – …            Member of the « Sélection Internationale Scientifique » jury at ENS-PSL
2020 – …            Member of the Ethics committee from Université Paris Descartes

Reviewer for international journals: The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Journal of the Association for Research in Otolaryngology, Plos One, Developmental Science, Ear and Hearing, Frontiers in Psychology

Outreaching activities and science popularization :

  • General public lecture at ENS Paris for the “Semaine du Cerveau” (2018, 2021) and the “Fête de la science” (2020)
  • Intervention in secondary schools for the “Semaine du Cerveau” (2022)
  • Organizing Pint of Science in Lyon and in Paris (2015, 2020)
  • Personal science popularization blog DBAO (http://dbao.leo-varnet.fr/)
  • Active contributor to the English and French Wikipedia
  • Expertise for the TV show E=m6 « Crissement de craie, bruit de mastication : pourquoi certains bruits nous sont-ils insupportables ? » (2017)
  • Organizing general public debates about Neuroscience and Ethics “les saisons du CRNL” in Lyon (2013 – 2015)

Publications: see here