Neuroexceptionalism: Framing an Emergent Debate

19 Pages Posted: 27 Aug 2021

See all articles by Dara Hallinan

Dara Hallinan

FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz Institute for Information Infrastructure

Simisola Akintoye

De Montfort University - Faculty of Business and Law

Bernd Carsten Stahl

De Montfort University

Damian Eke

De Montfort University - Faculty of Technology

Date Written: August 23, 2021

Abstract

In the past few decades, there have been significant advances in the sciences concerned with the brain and its functions. As science has advanced, the scientific and practical utility of neurodata – data concerning the nervous system’s nature, structure and function – has also grown. This expansion in utility, however, has brought with it ever increasing ethical and legal scrutiny on the legitimate use of neurodata. There is every reason to believe that the expansion in the scientific and practical utility of neurodata, as well as the increased attention given to attendant ethical and legal concerns, will continue apace. It seems likely that many of the forthcoming legal discussions will concern questions as to whether the collection and use of neurodata should be subject to specific and novel legal, ethical considerations: questions of neuroexceptionalism. In order for such discussions to take place in a structured and logical manner, a framework, in the form of an elaborated set of boundary conditions, for what constitutes a legitimate neuroexceptionalist position, is necessary. Unfortunately, no such framework has hitherto been elaborated. This paper attempts to fill this gap by elaborating such a framework in the form of relevant boundary conditions in relation to: i) the conditions under which neurodata might be considered exceptional; and ii) the conditions under which specific, novel, legal rules are required in response.

Keywords: neurodata, exceptionalism, law, ethics, fMRI

Suggested Citation

Hallinan, Dara and Akintoye, Simisola and Stahl, Bernd Carsten and Eke, Damian, Neuroexceptionalism: Framing an Emergent Debate (August 23, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3909816 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3909816

Dara Hallinan (Contact Author)

FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz Institute for Information Infrastructure ( email )

Hermann-von-Helmholtz-Platz 1
Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, 76344
Germany

Simisola Akintoye

De Montfort University - Faculty of Business and Law ( email )

United Kingdom
+44 116257 7790 (Phone)

Bernd Carsten Stahl

De Montfort University ( email )

The Gateway
Leicester, LE1 9BH
United Kingdom

Damian Eke

De Montfort University - Faculty of Technology ( email )

The Gateway
Leicester, LE1 9BH
United Kingdom

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