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Overview of Programs

campus-scene400Welcome to the website of the Center for Neuroscience & Society. We are a group of faculty and students from departments spanning the Schools of Arts and Sciences, Medicine, Law, and Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Pennsylvania, whose work addresses the ethical, legal and social implications of neuroscience.

To learn more about our research and writing, please see our faculty profiles and our open access repository, where most of our published papers are available for download. To watch some of our faculty speak about neuroscience and society, stream the short lecture videos available under the Resources tab. Our talk series brings leading scholars from around the world to discuss the social implications of neuroscience, and we also bring visiting professors and students to Penn for stays of a few weeks to a few months to interact with us on problems of neuroscience and society. We have active student groups in law and arts and sciences that meet regularly, and we have been teaching courses on neuroethics since the term was coined in 2002. We currently offer an undergraduate lecture course on Neuroscience & Society, a graduate course in neuroethics that is offered to students at multiple institutions through the NSF-funded Neuroethics Learning Collaborative. We also teach graduate students and professionals from around the world at Neuroscience Boot Camp, and offer the first CME-accredited conference on Clinical Neuroscience and Society.

Our subject matter calls for extensive collaboration. Many spheres of human life, from business to law, education to warfare, will be transformed by neuroscience in the coming decades. The “two cultures,” the “four estates,” and myriad academic disciplines and professions from around the world must work together to foster the most beneficial and humane uses of neuroscience. The Penn Center for Neuroscience & Society is therefore a highly collaborative group, with extensive interaction and cooperation within the university and with organizations outside of Penn.

Mission Statement: The mission of the Center for Neuroscience & Society is to increase understanding of the impact of neuroscience on society through research and teaching, and to encourage the responsible use of neuroscience for the benefit of humanity.

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