We are delighted that the Royal Society has launched it’s iHuman perspective report today. This takes a long-term look at the potential for neural interfaces: varied technologies which link the human mind to all kinds of devices, and have the potential to change the way humans interact with the world forever.
As part of the Royal Society programme HVM was commissioned to devise, facilitate and report on a series of engagements with diverse publics. These included:
Significant dialogues with people in Sheffield, London and Glasgow
A series of interviews and small group discussions with current users of neural interfaces (for example cochlear implants for those with hearing loss, and deep brain stimulation to improve the symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease)
Discussions and interviews with those with some knowledge of neural interfaces for example those with Parkinson’s Disease who do not use deep brain stimulation and members of the gaming community.
The HVM findings report From our brain to the world highlights the desire of citizens’ to be involved in ethical and practical discussions on how neural interface technologies should evolve. They shone a light on the delicate balance between ethical, social and economic considerations in the evolution of these technologies which have such powerful applications in both medical and non-medical spheres. To get a flavour of the discussion the executive summary is the place to go.