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Lines blur in military and civilian neuroscience, ethicists say

The ethics committee of Europe’s biggest neuroscience project has said that open science makes it difficult to responsibly manage the application of brain research.

In a report published on 21 December 2018, the ethics and society group of the Human Brain Project (HBP), a €1-billion research initiative, recommended stronger oversight of the military and intelligence uses of neuroscience. Concerns about such dual use of brain-inspired and brain-modifying technologies are growing, and include use by both nation states and other, smaller entities, the report said.

“In many universities, there is considerable interpenetration between civilian research and research that is funded by the security, military and intelligence sectors,” the authors note.

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