Saturday, October 23, 2010

"Transforming Humanity: Fantasy? Dream? Nightmare? Conference on Biomedical Enhancements," Center for Inquiry, Penn Center for Bioethics and Penn Center for Neuroscience and Society, University of Pennsylvania, December 3, 2010.

This conference will bring together leading scholars to address technological, moral, and legal questions relating to biomedical enhancements. Enhancements of human capacities, such as an increased lifespan or improved cognitive abilities, are a source of significant controversy. Some see them as a welcome development; others are much more skeptical. What is the realistic potential of enhancements? What are the ethical limits, if any, on enhancements? How should they be regulated?


  • Adrienne Asch (Yeshiva) and James Block (DePaul): The Mechanization of Politics: Rethinking Human Transformation
  • Allen Buchanan (Duke): Breaking Evolution’s Chains
  • Arthur Caplan (Penn): Fair or Foul: The Use of Enhancements in Sports
  • Peter Caws (George Washington): What is Humanity, that We should be Worried about Transforming It?
  • Martha Farah (Penn): Cyborgs, Superminds and Silliness: What are the Real Ethical Challenges for Neural Prosthetics?
  • James Giordano (Potomac Institute): Neuroscience, Neurotechnology, and Strivings to Flourish
  • Ronald A. Lindsay (CFI): The Ethics of Enhancements: Spurious Concerns and Genuine Uncertainties
  • Maxwell Mehlman (Case Western): Can Humanity Survive Evolutionary Engineering?
  • Jonathan Moreno (Penn): Enhancement and National Security
  • John Shook (CFI): Challenges for a Neuroscience of Moral Enhancement
  • Rosemarie Tong (UNC-Charlotte): Feminist Reflections on Looking Better and Living Longer
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