Centre for Research Ethics & Bioethics (CRB)

Neuroethics and Neurophilsophy

Our attempts at understanding the human brain raises philosophical, ethical and social issues. We are currently looking for two resarchers.

Understanding the human brain

We need research in neuroethics and neurophilosophy. This research can be divided into fundamental neuroethics/neurophilosophy (‘neuroscience of ethics’), and applied neuroethics/neurophilosophy (‘ethics of neuroscience').

Developing theory

Adequate applied research must be based on solid theory. We use a conceptual approach to neuroethics and neurophilosophy, focusing primarily on fundamental research questions concerning consciousness, human identity, and the self.

We are developing a theoretical framework for neuroethics to make analysis of practical issues fruitful. We are developing a theoretical framework for neuroethics to make analysis of practical issues fruitful. We examine the concepts that neuroscience uses and the impact that neuroscientific language and categories has on ethics and society

Applied research

We investigate applications of neuroscience and ethical assessments of neuroscientific research. Current PhD projects look at how we can use neuroimaging and other methods to understand how the mind works in people who can’t use their behaviour to communicate and what it is like to be unconscious.  

We are also part of the European Community (FET) Flagship Human Brain Project where we look at the ethical and social questions that are raised when we model the human brain, for example by simulation.

Multi-disciplinary approach

The CRB neuroethics research team is an international, multi-disciplinary group. Our backgrounds allow us to approach these issues from theoretical, philosophical, social, bio-political and clinical perspectives. We collaborate closely with neuroscientists to understand the ethical and philosophical questions that neuroscience brings.

International collaborations

We have long standing collaborations with Collège de France and the Pasteur Institute in Paris, and the Centro de Investigaciones Filosóficas (CIF) and the Institute of Cognitive Neurology (INECO) in Buenos Aires.

We also work with Universidad Central de Chile, Coma Research Group in Liege, the Canada Research Chair of Mind, Brain Imaging and Neuroethics in Ottawa, the Neuroethics Group of the Pellegrino Center for Clinical Bioethics of the Georgetown University in Washington DC, the Bioethics Unit of the Italian National Institute of Health in Rome, the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and the Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm.

selected Publications

Sallin K, Lagercrantz H, Evers K, Engström I, Hjern A, Petrovic P, Resignation Syndrome: Catatonia? Culture-Bound?, Front. Behav. Neurosci., 29 January 2016

Farisco M, “Cerebral Communication” With Patients With Disorders of Consciousness: Clinical Feasibility and Implications, AJOB Neuroscience, 2015;6(2):44-46.

Dudai Y, Evers K, First report on how far brain simulation can explain mechanisms of the mind, The Human Brain Project, 2015

Gini A, Larrivee D, Farisco M, Sironi VA, Keeping the human: neuroethics and the conciliation of dissonant values in the 21st century, Neuroscience and Neuroeconomics 2015;4:1-10

Evers K, Can we be epigenetically proactive? in T. Metzinger & J. M. Windt (2015) (Eds). Open MIND. Frankfurt am Main: MIND Group. doi: 10.15502/9783958570238

Dudai Y, Evers K, To Simulate or not to Simulate: What are the questions?, Neuron, 2014;84(2):254-261

Farisco M, Evers K and Petrini C, Biomedical research involving patients with disorders of consciousness: ethical and legal dimensions, Ann Ist Super Sanità, 2014;50(3):221-228

Farisco M, Petrini C, Misdiagnosis as an ethical and scientific challenge, Ann Ist Super Sanità, 2014;50(3):229-233

Farisco M, Laureys S, Evers K, Externalization of Consciousness. Scientific Possibilities and Clinical Implications, in: Geyer M, Ellenbroek B, Marsden C (eds), Current Topics in Behavioural Neurosciences, 2014, doi: 10.1007/7854_2014_338

Farisco M & Petrini C, On the Stand. Another Episode of Neuroscience and Law Discussion From Italy, Neuroethics

Salles A & Evers K (eds), La Vida Social del Cerebro, Editorial Fontamara, 2014, ISBN 978-607736-058-2

Farisco M, In Need of Meta-Scientific Experts? AJOB Neuroscience 2014, 5(2):20-52

Evers K & Sigman M, Possibilities and limits of mind-reading: A neurophilosophical perspective, Consciousness and Cognition, 2014;22:887–897

Evers K, Neuroética. Cuando la materia se despierta, Katz editores, 2010

Evers K, Uma Nova Visão do Cérebro: o Aparecimento da Neuroética, in Curado & Oliveira (eds.) 2010, Pessoas Transparentes: Questões Actuais de Bioética, EdicõesAlmedina, Coimbra, Portugal, 2010:77–92.

Evers K, Neuroéthique. Quand la matière s'éveille. Éditions Odile Jacob, Paris, 2009, also available online: Evers K, Neuroéthique. Quand la matière s'éveille, Centre for Research Ethics & Bioethics (CRB) 2014

Neuroethics & Philosophy of the Brain

The CRB neuroethics research team is an international, multi-disciplinary group. Our backgrounds allow us to approach these issues from theoretical, philosophical, social, bio-political and clinical perspectives. We collaborate closely with neuroscientists to understand the ethical and philosophical questions that neuroscience brings. In this report, we provide a summary of our research. The report was updated in November 2016.

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Neuroethicxs & philosophy of the brain

Neuroéthique. Quand la matière s'éveille

Evers K, Neuroéthique. Quand la matière s'éveille, Centre for Research Ethics & Bioethics (CRB) 2014, originally published by Éditions Odile Jacob, Paris, 2009.

The book has sold out and we offer an author version for download. The book has also been published in Spanish (Evers K, Neuroética. Cuando la materia se despierta, Katz editores, 2010).

Download book

Neuroéthique. Quand la matière s'éveille