Avoiding Irrational NeuroLaw Exuberance

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This chapter suggests on conceptual and empirical grounds that at present neuroscience does not have a large contribution to make to criminal justice doctrine, adjudication and policy and to law generally despite the great advances in the science. Irrational exuberance and overclaims about the relevance should be avoided. It also explains why the new neuroscience does not present a radical challenge to current legal conceptions of agency and responsibility. Although present caution is warranted, the chapter concludes that in the near and intermediate term, as the science advances, neuroscience might well make helpful contributions to the law.

Publication Citation

In Technologies on the Stand: Legal and Ethical Questions in Neuroscience and Robotics (Bibi van den Berg & Laura Klaming eds., Wolf Legal Publishers 2011)

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