Research on new substances and techniques that aim at improving learning abilities and intelligence have an ambivalent image. In NERRI, scientists, policy-makers, industry, civil society groups and the wider public will engage in mutual learning (MML) activities.
NERRI aims at contributing to the introduction of Responsible Research and Innovation in neuro-enhancement (NE) in the European Research Area and to the shaping of a normative framework underpinning the governance of NE technologies. This will be achieved through mobilisation and mutual learning (MML) activities engaging scientists, policy-makers, industry, civil society groups and the wider public.
To structure this complex socio-technical domain we propose an Analytic Classification of NE technologies into currently available methods, experimental and hypothetical technologies. Each of the types raises some fundamental ethical, legal, social and economic issues, which have different relevance to various societal groups point at different methods of stakeholder engagement and require different regulatory approaches. Over the course of the project the Analytic Classification will be developed and extended in the work packages.
Mobilisation will form the central commitment of the project from the outset to the conclusion. WP2 starts with a reconnaissance of the field of NE and the mobilisation of scientists and other stakeholders. Based on the Analytic Classification, WP3 will stimulate and organize a broad societal dialogue employing state-of-the-art engagement methodologies tailored to specific issues and stakeholders. A particular focus will be the hopes, fears and expectations of the wider public. WP4 will synthesise the national experience, map the contours of a normative framework as it emerges from societal engagement and dialogue and elaborate the concept of RRI in Europe. WP5 aims through a variety of dissemination strategies to maximise the impact of the project outcomes throughout Europe.
The consortium comprises experts in the neurocognitive sciences, the social sciences and humanities and science communication. Many have prior experience of EC projects and of successful collaborations with other members of the consortium.