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Neurotechnology and Neuroethics

Program Lead
Prof. Dr. James Giordano
Prof. Dr. med. Herbert Plischke


Tel +49-(0)8041-79929-0
Fax +49-(0)8041-79929-11

Neurotechnology and Neuroethics

In conjunction with the Human Science Center of Ludwig Maximilans Universität, and the Center for Neurotechnology Studies of the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies, Arlington, VA, USA, our ongoing research examines advancements in neuroscience and neurotechnology, and addresses the neuroethical and social issues that are important to the formulation of pragmatic guidelines and policies for research and use in a variety of settings including healthcare, quality of public life, and global security and health. An international collaborative effort, this work focuses upon the ways that neuroscience and technology might affect the human experience, human being, and human relationships (with both humans and other species).

The Neuroscience, Neurotechnology, Neuroethics: Philosophy, Practice and Policy (N3P3) project provides both ongoing research to assess and evaluate new techniques and technologies in neuroscience, and educational programs to engage students and colleagues in a variety of disciplines, including the life sciences, engineering, psychology, medicine, social sciences, humanities, public policy, healthcare and scientific administration, education, law, and economics.

Our projects involve undergraduate, graduate and professional students, and international post-doctoral fellows and visiting scholars in mentored, independent studies with the goal of fostering professional capabilities, and guided development of scholarly work. This work is presented at local, national and international conferences, and within the peer-reviewed literature. These studies are supported by a variety of extramural funding sources including grants, stipends, consultations, and contracts

Programs Include:

  • Research (i.e. - basic science, and ethics, legal, and social issues) projects
  • Specific educational projects
  • Academic programs and curricular development in neuroscience, neurotechnology and neuroethics’ studies
  • Lecture, symposia, conference, and workshop series
  • Scholar and fellow exchange programs

Ongoing Studies:

  • Impact of artificial lighting in scp-neurofeedback
  • Evaluation of ten-year profiles of neurotechnological developments and the neuroethical, legal and social issues these have incurred.
  • Assessment of public and professional knowledge, attitudes, and values regarding current and future progress in neuroscience and neurotechnology, and particular ethico-legal issues arising in and from such advancements.
  • Development and use of neuro-cognitive technologies to assess and affect human decision-making.
  • Use of, and neuroethical issues focal to brain-machine interfacing neurotechnologies in clinical, public, and military applications.
  • Use of neuroscience and neurotechnology in pain medicine, psychiatry, neurology, and physiatry, and the ethical issues generated by such use.
  • Address and analyses of current neuroethical approaches and systems, with particular interest in the validity, viability and value of these systems to evaluate, guide and regulate current and future developments in neuroscience and neurotechnology and their effects in the public sphere.

Recent Publications:

Plischke H, DuRousseau D, Giordano J. EEG-based neurofeedback- The promise of neurotechnology and need for neuroethically-informed guidelines and policies. Ethics Biol Engineer Med (2012, in press)

Fitz N, Benedikter R, Giordano J. Critical realism and contemporary neuroethics: Confluence, criticisms and conceptual potential. J Crit Realism (2012, in press).

Giordano J. Pain and suffering: Körper und Leib and the telos of pain care. Philosophy, Psychiatry and Psychology 19:1, (2012)

Giordano J. (ed.) Advances in Neurotechnology: Premises, Potential and Problems. CRC, Boca Raton (2012)

Giordano J, Benedikter R, Kohls NB. Neuroscience and the importance of a
neurobioethics: A reflection upon Fritz Jahr. In: Muzur A, Sass H-M. (eds.) Fritz Jahr and the Foundations of Integrative Bioethics. Münster; Berlin: LIT Verlag. (2012).

Giordano J. Unpacking neuroscience and neurotechnology - instructions not included: neuroethics required. Neuroethics, 4(3), (2012)

Giordano J, Benedikter R. An early - and necessary - flight of the Owl of Minerva: Neuroscience, neurotechnology, human socio-cultural boundaries, and the importance of neuroethics. J Evolution and Technol. 22(1): 14-25. (2012)

Kawa S, Giordano J.  A brief historicity of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM): Issues and implications for the future of psychiatric canon and practicePhil Ethics Humanities Med 7(1), (2012).

Giordano J. Keeping science and technology education In-STEP with the realities of the world stage: Inculcating responsibility for the power of STEM. Synesis: A Journal of Science, Technology, Ethics and Policy. 3(1): G1-5 (2012).

Alam S, Patel J, Giordano J. Working toward a new psychiatry –neuroscience, technology, and the DSM-5. Phil Ethics Humanities Med 7:1 (2012).

Kohls NB, Sauer S, Offenbächer M, Giordano J. Spirituality- an overlooked predictor of placebo effects? Phil Trans R Soc (Biol); 366: 1938-1848 (2011).

Giordano J,  Kohls NB. Spirituality, suffering, and the self. In: Giordano J. (ed.), Maldynia: Multidisciplinary Perspectives on the Illness of Chronic Pain (pp. 77 - 85). New York: Taylor &Francis. (2011).

Benedikter R, Giordano, J. The outer and inner transformation of the global sphere through technology: The state of two fields in transition. New Global Studies; 5(2); (2011).

Giordano J, Benedikter R. The shifting architectonics of pain medicine: Toward ethical re-alignment of scientific, medical and market values for the emerging global community - groundwork for policy. Pain Medicine, 12(3): 406-414 (2011).

Giordano J. On the implications of changing constructs of pain and addiction disorders in the DSM-5: Language games, ethics and actions. Int J Law Healthcare Ethics; 7(1); (2011).

Giordano J, Kohls NB. Self, suffering and spirituality: The neuroscience of being, pain and spiritual experiences and practices. Mind and Matter, 6: 179-192 (2008)