Elisabeth Hildt

Elisabeth Hildt
Illinois Institute of Technology | IIT · Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions

About

81
Publications
18,145
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1,107
Citations
Citations since 2016
44 Research Items
798 Citations
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2016201720182019202020212022020406080100120140
2016201720182019202020212022020406080100120140
Introduction
Elisabeth Hildt is a Professor of Philosophy and the director of the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions at the Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago. She is interested in social and ethical aspects of new technologies.

Publications

Publications (81)
Article
Can machines be conscious and what would be the ethical implications? This article gives an overview of current robotics approaches toward machine consciousness and considers factors that hamper an understanding of machine consciousness. After addressing the epistemological question of how we would know whether a machine is conscious and discussing...
Article
Full-text available
As commercial virtual assistants become an integrated part of almost every smart device that we use on a daily basis, including but not limited to smartphones, speakers, personal computers, watches, TVs, and TV sticks, there are pressing questions that call for the study of how participants perceive commercial virtual assistants and what relational...
Article
Full-text available
In this article, we present the results of 30 ethnographic interviews in which we asked STEM graduate and undergraduate students at a university in the Midwest of the United States about topics related to the culture of their research group, how group members communicate and interact, and their experience with ethical issues that arise within the l...
Article
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The paper’s main contributions are twofold: to demonstrate how to apply the general European Union’s High-Level Expert Group’s (EU HLEG) guidelines for trustworthy AI in practice for the domain of healthcare; and to investigate the research question of what does “trustworthy AI” mean at the time of the COVID-19 pandemic. To this end, we present the...
Preprint
Full-text available
This report is a methodological reflection on Z-Inspection. Z-Inspection is a holistic process used to evaluate the trustworthiness of AI-based technologies at different stages of the AI lifecycle. It focuses, in particular, on the identification and discussion of ethical issues and tensions through the elaboration of socio-technical scenarios. It...
Chapter
In this collected volume, we are interested in the roles of ethics codes and ethical guidelines in professions in which research and innovation play an important role and where emerging technologies bring about considerable, sometimes fast-paced change.
Chapter
This article discusses the role of informed consent, a well-known concept and standard established in the field of medicine, in ethics codes relating to digital data management. It analyzes the significance allotted to informed consent and informed consent-related principles in ethics codes, policies, and guidelines by presenting the results of a s...
Chapter
Ethics codes and ethical guidelines are an established way of installing standards in professions, science, technology, and business. They help institutions and organizations address emerging issues, regulate practice-specific contexts, provide support, and are seen as helpful resources for professional-specific teaching. When it comes to the broad...
Book
This book investigates how ethics generally precedes legal regulation, and looks at how changes in codes of ethics represent an unparalleled window into the research, innovation, and emerging technologies they seek to regulate. It provides case studies from the fields of engineering, science, medicine and social science showing how professional cod...
Article
Full-text available
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has the potential to greatly improve the delivery of healthcare and other services that advance population health and wellbeing. However, the use of AI in healthcare also brings potential risks that may cause unintended harm. To guide future developments in AI, the High-Level Expert Group on AI set up by the European Co...
Article
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This paper documents how an ethically aligned co-design methodology ensures trustworthiness in the early design phase of an artificial intelligence (AI) system component for healthcare. The system explains decisions made by deep learning networks analyzing images of skin lesions. The co-design of trustworthy AI developed here used a holistic approa...
Article
In this article, we summarize the key findings of an exploratory study in which students and faculty completed a survey that sought to identify the most important ethical issues in STEM fields, how often these issues are discussed in research groups, and how often these ethical issues come up in the daily practice of research. Participants answered...
Article
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This article describes a National Science Foundation-funded project that engages graduate students in the active development of context-specific codes-of-ethics based guidelines for use in their research group. By actively engaging students in ethics discussions specific to their everyday practice, this approach has the benefit of situating ethics...
Book
This book brings together a number of essays that are optimistic about the ways certain neuroscientific insights might advance philosophical ethics, and other essays that are more circumspect about the relevance of neuroscience to philosophical ethics. As a whole, the essays form a self-reflective body of work that simultaneously seeks to derive no...
Chapter
This chapter aims to offer some general thoughts on the development and use of intelligent assistive technologies in dementia. Based on an analysis of ethical principles and concepts, guidelines, recommendations, and codes of conduct in the field broadly construed, the text argues for an approach that takes the user perspective, in particular the u...
Article
In this article, we present an educational intervention that embeds ethics education within research laboratories. This structure is designed to assist students in addressing ethical challenges in a more informed way, and to improve the overall ethical culture of research environments. The project seeks (a) to identify factors that students and res...
Presentation
In our project, “Building a Culture of Responsible Research and Practice in STEM ” we are engaging graduate students in the active development of context-specific codes-of-ethics based guidelines. During the 2017-2018 academic year, the project worked with four groups of graduate students from the Biology, Biomedical Engineering, Chemical and Biolo...
Article
Full-text available
Pharmacological cognitive enhancement (PCE), the use of illicit and/or prescription drugs to increase cognitive performance, has spurred controversial discussion in bioethics. In a semi-structured interview study with 60 German university students and employees, differences and similarities in moral attitudes toward PCE among 30 experienced partici...
Article
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Neuroenhancement involves the use of neurotechnologies to improve cognitive, affective or behavioural functioning, where these are not judged to be clinically impaired. Questions about enhancement have become one of the key topics of neuroethics over the past decade. The current study draws on in-depth public engagement activities in ten European c...
Chapter
Das Bestreben, durch Einsatz medizinischer Verfahren, psychoaktiver Substanzen oder anderer Methoden bei gesunden Personen eine Verbesserung von Hirnfunktionen zu erreichen (Neuroenhancement), ist in den letzten Jahren verstärkt ins öffentliche Bewusstsein gerückt. Während beginnend mit den 1990er Jahren in erster Linie im Vordergrund stand, mittel...
Article
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This paper reports on an online contrastive vignette study investigating the public's views of gene editing for therapy and enhancement in adult and prenatal contexts. The study, comprising quota samples of 1000 respondents per country, involved 10 European countries and the United States. Vignettes featuring gene editing for therapy compared to en...
Book
Full-text available
The Human Sciences after the Decade of the Brain brings together exciting new works that address today’s key challenges for a mutual interaction between cognitive neuroscience and the social sciences and humanities. Taking up the methodological and conceptual problems of choosing a neuroscience approach to disciplines such as philosophy, history, e...
Article
Full-text available
In bioethics, the first decade of the twenty-first century was characterized by the emergence of interest in the ethical, legal and social aspects of neuroscience research. At the same time an ongoing extension of the topics and phenomena addressed by neuroscientists was observed alongside its rise as one of the leading disciplines in the biomedica...
Article
Full-text available
Recent studies using gene editing tools such as CRISPR/Cas9 have shown an enormously broad spectrum of possible future applications. This genetic engineering technique allows researchers to easily disable, insert, or replace DNA fragments, while raising risks such as incomplete or inaccurate editing, off-target mutations, and other unintended conse...
Chapter
Viele versprechen sich von den Neurowissenschaften eine Verbesserung der geistigen Eigenschaften gesunder Menschen - das sogenannte »Neuroenhancement«. Dieser Band gibt einen umfassenden Überblick über den Diskussionsstand in unterschiedlichen wissenschaftlichen Disziplinen. Die Autorinnen und Autoren beschreiben nicht nur ein breites Spektrum unte...
Article
After twenty-five years of integrating ethics across the curriculum at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT), the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions conducted a survey of full-time faculty to investigate: a) what ethical topics faculty thought students from their discipline should be aware of when they graduate, b) how widely et...
Book
The book contains contributions from various academic disciplines to the discussion on the use of Neuroenhancement.
Article
Pharmacological neuroenhancement (PN) describes the use of psychoactive drugs for the purpose of enhancing cognition (e. g., fatigue, concentration, memory etc.) by healthy subjects without medical need. Drugs used for this purpose can be divided into freely available, over-the-counter drugs (e. g., methylxanthines such as caffeine), prescription d...
Article
The article outlines some important conceptual problems in the bioethical debate on pharmacological cognitive enhancement. We discuss the prospects, risks, and ethical challenges of several debated pharmaceuticals and scrutinize the rights and moral obligations of enhancement users as well as the possible impact of cognitive enhancement on their se...
Article
Full-text available
The use of stimulants for the purpose of pharmacological neuroenhancement (NE) among students is a subject of increasing public awareness. The risk of addiction development by stimulant use for NE is still unanswered. Therefore, face-to-face interviews were carried out among 18 university students experienced in the nonmedical use of methylphenidat...
Article
Full-text available
Recent brain-to-brain interfacing studies provide proof of principle for the feasibility of various forms of direct information transfer between two brains, and may lead to the development of new approaches involving memory, emotions, or senses. What makes brain-to-brain interfaces unique is the transfer of information representing specific message...
Article
Full-text available
This commentary examines the pros and cons of the fictitious enhancement scenarios used in Lapenta et al. 2014. Then it gives a non-fictional impression of the current self-enhancement use of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) by healthy individuals and discusses the ethical issues involved.
Chapter
In this chapter, theoretical reflections on human–computer interaction in brain–computer interfaces (BCIs) are combined with the results of an empirical investigation concerning non-invasive EEG-based BCI users’ experiences with this technology. After a short overview of transhumanist visions in the field of neurotechnology this text discusses some...
Article
In this paper, the results of a pilot interview study with 19 subjects participating in an EEG-based non-invasive brain–computer interface (BCI) research study on stroke rehabilitation and assistive technology and of a survey among 17 BCI professionals are presented and discussed in the light of ethical, legal, and social issues in research with hu...
Article
Full-text available
Academic performance enhancement or cognitive enhancement (CE) via stimulant drug use has received increasing attention. The question remains, however, whether CE solely represents the use of drugs for achieving better academic or workplace results or whether CE also serves various other purposes. The aim of this study was to put the phenomenon of...
Book
This volume summarizes the ethical, social and cultural contexts of interfacing brains and computers. It is intended for the interdisciplinary community of BCI stakeholders. Insofar, engineers, neuroscientists, psychologists, physicians, care-givers and also users and their relatives are concerned. For about the last twenty years brain-computer-int...
Chapter
Dieser Beitrag beschäftigt sich mit der Bedeutung von Unsicherheit und Nichtwissen in verschiedenen bioethischen Kontexten. Hierzu wird zunächst nach einleitenden Begriffsklärungen die Rolle von Unsicherheit auf der Theorieebene thematisiert: So besitzen empirische Unsicherheiten für unterschiedliche Ethiktheorien durchaus unterschiedlich große Rel...
Chapter
Cognitive enhancement, which can be characterized as the attempt to increase cognitive functions such as attention or memory in healthy individuals, has received considerable attention during the last decade, both in the general public and in academic discourse. In spite of a very active interdisciplinary debate which has provided helpful reflectio...
Book
Cognitive enhancement is the use of drugs, biotechnological strategies or other means by healthy individuals aiming at the improvement of cognitive functions such as vigilance, concentration or memory without any medical need. In particular, the use of pharmacological substances (caffeine, prescription drugs or illicit drugs) has received considera...
Article
Full-text available
Pharmacological cognitive enhancement (CE) is a topic of increasing public awareness. In the scientific literature on student use of CE as a study aid for academic performance enhancement, there are high prevalence rates regarding the use of caffeinated substances (coffee, caffeinated drinks, caffeine tablets) but remarkably lower prevalence rates...
Article
Little is known regarding characteristics of subjects using substances exclusively for the purpose of pharmacological neuroenhancement (PN). Aim of this pilot study was to characterize students in Germany who use methylphenidate (MPH) and/or amphetamines (AMPH) for PN. Semi-structured interviews among 20 students who reported the use of MPH/AMPH fo...
Article
Full-text available
Cognitive enhancement aims at optimizing a specific class of information-processing functions: cognitive functions, physically realized by the human brain. This article deals with ethical issues in cognitive enhancement (CE). It discusses some standard conceptual issues related to the notion of "cognitive enhancement" and then continues from a pure...
Article
Ziel: Auch in Deutschland werden verschreibungspflichtige und illegale (Psycho-) Stimulanzien wie Methylphenidat und Amphetamine von Studierenden ohne medizinische Indikation zur geistigen Leistungssteigerung missbraucht. Über die Charakteristika dieses sog. pharmakologischen Neuroenhancements (PN) ist bislang nur wenig bekannt. Methoden: Semistru...
Chapter
This chapter will focus on ethical aspects and decision-making conflicts in prenatal testing that arise in the case of conspicuous test results. In order to gain some insight into the women’s experiences when confronted with a conspicuous test result, we studied their answers to the open questions in the questionnaires of EDIG substudy A. After giv...
Book
Technological developments in the life sciences confront us with new facets of a Faustian seduction. Are we „playing God“ more and more, as claimed by critical authors of modernity? Achievements in genetic research produce ethical dilemmas which need to be the subject of reflection and debate in modern societies. Denial of ambivalences that ethical...
Article
Objective: To assess information processes and acceptance of cognitive enhancement (CE) among students. Material and Methods: 18 healthy university students reporting nonmedical use of stimulants for CE have been interviewed about information processes and acceptance of CE conducting face-to-face interviews. The interviews were transcribed and anal...
Article
Zusammenfassung Gegenstand und Ziel: Untersuchung der Informationsquellen und derAkzeptanz von pharmakologischem Neuroenhancement (PN) unter Studierenden. Material und Methoden: Es wurden 18 gesunde, Stimulanzien zum PN konsumierende Studierende zu Informationsquellen und Akzeptanz durch deren Peergroup in Faceto-face-Interviews befragt. Die Interv...
Article
This paper discusses current clinical applications and possible future uses of brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) as a means for communication, motor control and entertainment. After giving a brief account of the various approaches to direct brain-computer interaction, the paper will address individual, social and ethical implications of BCI technolo...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this study was to assess for the first time the prevalence and factors associated with stimulant use exclusively for cognitive enhancement among pupils and university students in Germany. A sample of 1 035 pupils (vocational and grammar schools) in small and big cities and 512 university students of 3 Departments (Medicine, Pharmacy, Eco...
Article
Individual autonomy is a concept highly appreciated in modern Western societies. Its significance is reflected by the central importance and broad use of the model of informed consent in all fields of medicine. In predictive genetic testing, individual autonomy gains particular importance, for what is in focus here is not so much a concrete medical...
Article
Autonomy is a central and multifaceted concept of ethical reflection with many nuances of meaning. Central to the concept are the ability and opportunity to self-determine and self-design, as well as the potential to shape the course of one's own life significantly. However, there is generally a narrow understanding of the concept in the debate on...
Article
Research into human ageing is a growing field of research with two central foci: geriatric medicine works to reduce the incidence and severity of age-related diseases and disabilities by devising adequate therapeutic and preventive strategies. A second focus, this time in the emerging field of biogerontology, is to bring about a general retardation...
Article
Autonomie stellt ein zentrales Konzept ethischer Reflexion mit äußerst vielschichtigen Bedeutungsvarianten dar. Im Zentrum des Begriffs befinden sich die Fähigkeit und Möglichkeit zur Selbstbestimmung und zum Selbstentwurf sowie die Möglichkeit, den Verlauf des eigenen Lebens maßgeblich gestalten zu können. Jedoch steht bei der Diskussion von Patie...
Article
Full-text available
In the following text, medical, anthropological and ethical issues of deep brain stimulation, a medical technol- ogy in which electrodes implanted in the human brain electrically influence specified brain regions, will be discussed. After a brief account of the deep brain stimulation procedure and its chances and risks, anthropo- logical and ethica...
Article
An increase in autonomy and freedom is often considered one of the main arguments in favour of a broad use of genetic testing. Starting from Gerald Dworkin's reflections on autonomy and choice this article examines some of the implications which accompany the increase in choices offered by prenatal genetic diagnosis. Although personal autonomy and...
Article
Full-text available
The method of neural grafting is considered to be a very promising therapeutic strategy for the treatment of certain neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's disease or Huntington's disease. During the last 15 years, clinical transplantation studies have been carried out worldwide in several hundreds of patients with Parkinson's disease. In...
Chapter
Automony and freedom of action are important characteristics of personhood which are of relevance in almost all areas of human existence. Also in the context of medical ethics the concepts of autonomy, freedom of action, and freedom of choice, which are all tightly linked to one another, play an important role. The concept of freedom can be interpr...

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Projects (6)
Project
Trustworthy and ethical AI is one of the most important current research fields. In general, and especially in healthcare. In general, we face the challenge that it is well known by now how ethical development could look like but we see little real impact on development. In healthcare specifically, an increasing number of AI-based solutions is developed for the clinical setting. But issues of robustness, reproducibility, autonomy, privacy, transparency (especially xAI), fairness, and accountability remain. Part of this project is performed within the z-inspection consortium http://z-inspection.org/