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President Obama charged the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues to identify a set of core ethical standards in the neuroscience domain, including the appropriate use of neuroscience in the criminal-justice system. The Commission, in turn, called for comments and recommendations. The MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Law and Neuroscience submitted a consensus statement, published here, containing 16 specific recommendations. These are organized within three main themes: 1) what steps should be taken to enhance the capacity of the criminal justice system to make sound decisions regarding the admissibility and weight of neuroscientific evidence?; 2) to what extent can the capacity of neurotechnologies to aid in the administration of criminal justice be enhanced through research?; and 3) in what additional ways might important ethical issues at the intersection of neuroscience and criminal justice be addressed?


law and neuroscience, psychology, neurolaw, criminal responsibility, tort liability, evidence, brain, memory, injury, emotion, lie detection, judging, psychopathy, fMRI, EEG, decision making, neuroethics, bioethics, punishment, sentencing

Publication Title

Journal of Law & Bioscience

Publication Citation

1 J. L. & Biosci. 224 (2014)