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ASSESSING EVENT LOGISTICS OF THE SPRING 2018 ETHICS & INNOVATION SYMPOSIUM

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At Arizona State University (ASU), there is a perceived lack of interdisciplinary symposiums for student presenters and a lack of understanding about the university's "#1 in Innovation" title awarded by U.S. News & World report. In addition, ASU focuses on

At Arizona State University (ASU), there is a perceived lack of interdisciplinary symposiums for student presenters and a lack of understanding about the university's "#1 in Innovation" title awarded by U.S. News & World report. In addition, ASU focuses on advertising innovation in a few select fields, such as astronomy and space exploration. To address these issues, a team of Lincoln Undergraduate Scholars planned an Ethics & Innovation Symposium with the theme of "Defining Our Future" for April 11, 2018. I chose to conduct a post-event analysis of logistics, successes, and failures. This additional evaluation was meant to serve as a measure of the symposium's sustainability for future years. This thesis addresses the methods of event planning (incl. marketing, gathering student presenters, catering, room reservation), results, and analysis of outcomes specifically for the Ethics & Innovation Symposium. Overall, the thesis document will benefit anyone interested in planning some event at the university level. Additional reference documents are included in this report to provide help with creating a general checklist, developing marketing deliverables, and contacting university departments/organizations.

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2018-12

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The Ethics of Brain-Computer Interfaces

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The development of computational systems known as brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) offers the possibility of allowing individuals disabled by neurological disorders such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and ischemic stroke the ability to perform relatively complex tasks such as communicating with

The development of computational systems known as brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) offers the possibility of allowing individuals disabled by neurological disorders such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and ischemic stroke the ability to perform relatively complex tasks such as communicating with others and walking. BCIs are closed-loop systems that record physiological signals from the brain and translate those signals into commands that control an external device such as a wheelchair or a robotic exoskeleton. Despite the potential for BCIs to vastly improve the lives of almost one billion people, one question arises: Just because we can use brain-computer interfaces, should we? The human brain is an embodiment of the mind, which is largely seen to determine a person's identity, so a number of ethical and philosophical concerns emerge over current and future uses of BCIs. These concerns include privacy, informed consent, autonomy, identity, enhancement, and justice. In this thesis, I focus on three of these issues: privacy, informed consent, and autonomy. The ultimate purpose of brain-computer interfaces is to provide patients with a greater degree of autonomy; thus, many of the ethical issues associated with BCIs are intertwined with autonomy. Currently, brain-computer interfaces exist mainly in the domain of medicine and medical research, but recently companies have started commercializing BCIs and providing them at affordable prices. These consumer-grade BCIs are primarily for non-medical purposes, and so they are beyond the scope of medicine. As BCIs become more widespread in the near future, it is crucial for interdisciplinary teams of ethicists, philosophers, engineers, and physicians to collaborate to address these ethical concerns now before BCIs become more commonplace.

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2016-05

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The Ethics of Human Memory Augmentation

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Memory augmentation will play a vital role in the development of our future. The predicted introduction of downloadable brains will be the first of many neurocognitive technologies that will alter our lives at both the societal and individual levels. These

Memory augmentation will play a vital role in the development of our future. The predicted introduction of downloadable brains will be the first of many neurocognitive technologies that will alter our lives at both the societal and individual levels. These technologies can affect everything from educational institutions to the judicial system, meanwhile raising issues such as autonomy, human psychology, and selfhood. Because of its tremendous potential, memory augmentation and its implications should thoroughly be examined.

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2013-05

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THE ETHICAL AND ECONOMICAL IMPLICATIONS OF HUMAN GENETIC ENGINEERING

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When an individual is conceived there is a metaphorical roll of the dice. A game of chance is played with their genetics to which they cannot consent. Unlucky players could have inherited mild conditions such as chronic allergies to terrible

When an individual is conceived there is a metaphorical roll of the dice. A game of chance is played with their genetics to which they cannot consent. Unlucky players could have inherited mild conditions such as chronic allergies to terrible diseases such as Cystic Fibrosis or Tay-Sachs. Controlling the genetics of an individual through the use of gene editing technology could be the key to ending this cycle of genetic diseases. Once detrimental diseases are now being cured through direct applications of genetic engineering. Even as we see the uses of genetic engineering technologies change the world, the more “sci-fi” applications have yet to be fully realized or explored. Editing hereditary genes before birth may have the ability to eliminate diseases from entire genetic lines, reduce the possibility for certain cancers and diseases, and perhaps even modify phenotypes in humans to create enhanced humans. Although this scientific field shows promise, it does have its reservations. Like any other scientific field, its ability to benefit humanity depends on its use.

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2020-05