If you are interested in predictive coding, learning, motivation, addiction, or reward, don’t miss this excellent video by Kent Berridge. The incentive salience theory has long fascinated me as it may potentially explain data not accounted for by the hedonic-aversive accounts of addiction and reward. Essentially Incentive Salience argues that rather than reward or addiction being purely the function of seeking hedonic rewards or avoiding aversive punishments (e.g. withdrawal), salient cues trigger direct “wanting” responses irrespective of the reward itself. This may explain why for example, mice often continue to seek rewards even when dopamine is blocked and no pleasurable outcome can be obtained, or conversely why even in the absence of withdrawal addicts will seek drugs in response to salient cues. Anyway, Kent explains it much better than I can- so watch it!