Gray Matters: Topics at the Intersection of Neuroscience, Ethics, and Society is the second volume of the Bioethics Commission’s two-part response to President Obama’s request related to the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative.
In this report, the Bioethics Commission broadly focused its analysis on three particularly controversial topics that illustrate the ethical tensions and societal implications of advancing neuroscience and technology: cognitive enhancement, consent capacity, and neuroscience and the legal system.
Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues
The Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues (the Bioethics Commission) is an advisory panel of the nation’s leaders in medicine, science, ethics, religion, law, and engineering. The Bioethics Commission advises the President on bioethical issues arising from advances in biomedicine and related areas of science and technology. The Bioethics Commission seeks to identify and promote policies and practices that ensure scientific research, health care delivery, and technological innovation are conducted in a socially and ethically responsible manner.
Gray Matters, Vol. 2 seeks to clarify the scientific landscape, identify common ground, and recommend ethical paths forward. Cautioning against hyperbole and misinformation when discussing the promise of neuroscience, the report offers 14 recommendations to help clear a path to productive discourse.