As researchers develop new non-invasive direct-to-consumer technologies that read and stimulate the brain, society must consider the appropriate uses of such devices. Will these brain technologies eventually allow enhancement of abilities beyond human capabilities? In what settings are people using these devices outside the purview of researchers or clinicians? Should consumers be allowed to ‘hack’ their own brain in order to improve performance?
To explore these challenges and the ethical issues raised by advances in do-it-yourself (DIY) neurotechnology, the Emerging Issues Task Force of the International Neuroethics Society is organizing a virtual panel discussion. The panel will discuss neurotechnologies such as transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) and electroencephalogram (EEG) headsets and their ability to change the way we understand and alter our brains. Particular attention will be given to the use of neurotechnology by everyday people and the implications this has for regulatory oversight and citizen neuroscience. Topics of discussion will include the distinction between DIY and direct-to-consumer (DTC) neurotechnology, the most pressing ethical issues in this space, models for responsible innovation, and the need for additional oversight.
Our panel of experts will explore various technological and ethical issues raised by DIY neurotechnology and address questions submitted by participants. Panelists include:
Marcello Ienca, ETH Zurich
Karola Kreitmair, University of Wisconsin–Madison
Anna Wexler, University of Pennsylvania
Ishan Dasgupta, University of Washington (moderator)