Neurotechnology, like many developing sciences, is a multi-disciplinary field that has the potential to revolutionize medicine, law, warfare, and education.
The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies and The American Association for the Advancement of Science will be hosting a series of symposia intended to provide a forum for the public and policymakers focused on the societal impacts of neuroscience and technology. One of the goals of the series is to develop future U.S. policy recommendations.
Neuroscience and technology will affect our society in more ways that we currently imagine. The speed of technology development significantly outpaces that of policy development.
The 2014 Neuroscience Symposia Series will feature the leading experts in science, policy, law, information technology, security, and education. The attendees will include US government officials, high-level industry members, and academics.
Topics of the Symposia series include:
- Data Sharing in Neuroscience. Despite increased ease of collaboration and convenience of data availability, various obstacles to open data sharing remain, including lack of incentives to researchers and the absence of data reporting standards. Researchers, policy makers, and information technology (IT) specialists will examine current neuroscience data sharing platforms and the potential for a common database and criteria for reporting neuroscience results.
- Cognitive Security. As neurotechnology advances and becomes more accessible, the scope of its use escalates to include weapons that might be used to attack the individual and collective conscience of our society. The potential for neurotechnology weapons raises a number of questions regarding the regulation and national security implications of such capabilities. Experts in neuroscience, policy, and military tactics will consider the current state of neuroweapons and the potential for future use of this technology.
- Educational Neuroscience: From Lab to Classroom. Recent developments in understanding how the brain learns have led to an important crossroad of neuroscience and education. Educators, policy makers, and scientists will review educational policies and anticipate how future neuroscience studies could affect the US education system.
- Neuroscience and Genetics. Recent advances established that the human brain has regenerative potential through a number of studies demonstrating plasticity of both cells and circuits in the brain, and the ability to genetically reprogram cells. Experts from the pharmaceutical industry, medicine, and academia will discuss the future of enhancing and rebuilding the brain through genetic and cellular methods.
- The Role of Neuroscience in Law and Policy. Progress in brain imaging technology has raised major political and societal questions, while advances in deception detection are partly responsible for the recent increase in the number of judicial opinions in the US involving neuroscience-based evidence. Experts in law, neuroscience, and policy will debate the place of neuroscience data and imaging techniques in law and policy.
- Neuroscience, Privacy, and Cybersecurity. Innovative research in the field of neurotechnology has lead to breakthroughs in brain-computer interface capabilities that will revolutionize the way society interacts with computers in the future. Scientists, IT specialists, and policy makers will examine the privacy and security questions that arise from advances in brain-computer interface technology and the accessibility to an individuals neural data.