Neurotechnology, art and ethic

“A nexus is a connection. What results when art, technology and the public react? We think: new perspectives on the impact of technologies and new spaces for ethical dialogue and discourse.” That is a brief description of the Nexus Experiments project, where staff develop and organize new formats of science communication and debate for the BrainLinks-BrainTools Cluster of Excellence of the University of Freiburg. Since 2012, the team headed by Prof. Dr. Oliver Müller from the Department of Philosophy has put on almost 60 events to promote a dialogue between researchers from the Cluster and the public, and to establish interfaces between art, neurotechnology research and ethics, and it has now documented the results online.

Under “Lab”, the new website offers thought experiments for anyone to try: users can for example tackle the questions of what makes human identity or which neurotechnologies deserve financial support. Under “DIY”, there are step-by-step directions for how to put on public events such as a Brain Quiz or the science/art experiment Science Jam. “Experiments” covers amongst other things a documentary film on the Störung/Hafraah dance/science project, literary texts from the artist-in-residence project involving the author Annette Pehnt, and the edited results of events such as the Hirn-Strips comic-workshop or the Cerebromatik dialog and installation on interfaces, metaphors and images of the brain. There is also a blog with information on latest developments at the Cluster and current project-related events.

The activities of Nexus Experiments – which used to be known as “Reaching Out” – have to date involved the cooperation of almost 40 researchers, more than 30 artists and five cultural institutions. The team’s events regularly draw up to 300 visitors.

Sabrina Livanec
University of Freiburg
Tel.: +49 761 203-9544

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