Biotechnologies are generally developed to heal people from severe diseases . However, many of these technologies have the potential to be used beyond the frame of therapy as a way to improve or enhance normal human capacities. Biotechnologies can help to make people think better, to improve their memory and perception, to feel happier, to improve physical skills in sports, music, dance, or to extend the normal human life-span. In view of the potential of biotechnologies (and other technologies like nanotechnologies and information technologies) to change our capacities, there is an ethical debate whether such an enhancement may alter our sense of self, our human nature and our relation with other life forms. Moreover, there is a concern about the impact of these technologies on our society and the position of vulnerable groups. Is enhancement a good thing in itself or will it expose our human nature, our personal life and our society to irreversible damage? Professor Ruud ter Meulen (Centre for Ethics in Medicine, University of Bristol ) addresses some of these questions, particularly those concerning the moral value of enhancement.
Wednesday 23 May
Human enhancement technologies
Speaker: Prof. dr. Ruud ter Meulen
Location: Blauwe Zaal Auditorium