Scientific developments in neuroscience have generated potentially contentious issues. These developments affect clinical realms of neurology, neurosurgery and psychiatry. Philosophical issues have both guided such inquiry and are essential to understanding the complex intersection of neuroscientific progress and ethical domains of research, medical practice and the social impact of these enterprises.
These questions are foundation to the ethical issues inherent to progress in basic and clinical applications of neuroscience. Some of these debates include whether particular interventions represent treatment or enhancement, the use or misuse of neurogenetic and neuroimaging data, moral ambiguities surrounding the use of neural allo- and xenotransplantation, and ethical dilemmas arising within the contexts of neuroscientific policy, clinical practice and the scope and tenor of current and future research directions.
The initiative has gathered an international group of professionals and researchers from various specialties that periodically meet and work in research groups, sharing ideas, values, interests and experiences. They will adopt an interdisciplinary approach on the ethics of neuroscience and the neuroscience of ethics.
The group will favor the contrasting views and debate on the matters of greater import, based on a deep analysis and critique of the scientific data. It is essential that they integrate the methodology based on sound philosophical and anthropological principles which is centered on the human person. Different spheres of knowledge and of their applications will be integrated within a global network.
The working group will eventually provide proposals and guidelines through conferences, seminars, and publications, etc. This will stimulate cognitive scientists to seek points of contact between the neurosciences and a philosophical-anthropological vision centered on the human person.