The interaction between perception and action represents one of the pillars of human evolutionary success. Our interactions with the surrounding world involve a variety of behaviors, almost always including movements of the eyes and hands. Such actions rely on neural mechanisms that must process an enormous amount of information in order to generate appropriate motor commands. Yet, compared to the great advancements in the field of perception for cognition, the neural underpinnings of how we control our movements, as well as the interactions between perception and motor control, remain elusive. With this research topic we provide a framework for: 1) the perception of real objects and shapes using visual and haptic information, 2) the reference frames for action and perception, and 3) how perceived target properties are translated into goal-directed actions and object manipulation. The studies in this special issue employ a variety of methodologies that include behavioural kinematics, neuroimaging, transcranial magnetic stimulation and patient cases. Here we provide a brief summary and commentary on the articles included in this research topic.