On The Social Complexity of Neurotechnology : Designing A Futures Workshop for The Exploration Of More Just Alternative Futures

Daniel Campos-Muñiz*, Gloria A. Mendoza-Franco, Claudia Garduño-García, Renee Harari-Masri

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Novel technologies like artificial intelligence or neurotechnology are expected to have social implications in the future. As they are in the early stages of development, it is challenging to identify potential negative impacts that they might have on society. Typically, assessing these effects relies on experts, and while this is essential, there is also a need for the active participation of the wider public, as they might also contribute relevant ideas that must be taken into consideration. This article introduces an educational futures workshop called Spark More Just Futures, designed to act as a tool for stimulating critical thinking from a social justice perspective based on the Capability Approach. To do so, we first explore the theoretical background of neurotechnology, social justice, and existing proposals that assess the social implications of technology and are based on the Capability Approach. Then, we present a general framework, tools, and the workshop structure. Finally, we present the results obtained from two slightly different versions (4 and 5) of the workshop. Such results led us to conclude that the designed workshop succeeded in its primary objective, as it enabled participants to discuss the social implications of neurotechnology, and it also widened the social perspective of an expert who participated. However, the workshop could be further improved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-77
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Futures Studies
Volume28
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Capability Approach
  • Futures Workshop
  • Neurotechnology
  • Social Implications

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