Episode #15 – Nicole Vincent on Neurointerventions and Human Happiness

phil_vincentpicfeb2015-300x300In this episode I talk to Nicole Vincent. Nicole is an international philosopher extraordinaire. She has appointments at Georgia State University, TU Delft (Netherlands) and Macquarie University (Sydney). Nicole’s work focuses on the philosophy of responsibility, cognitive enhancement and neuroethics. We talk about two main topics: (i) can neuroscience make us happier? and (ii) how should we think about radically changing ourselves through technology?

You can download the episode here. You can also listen below or subscribe on Stitcher or iTunes (via RSS feed).

Show Notes

  • 0:00 – 0:50 – Introduction to Nicole
  • 0:50 – 8:50 – What is a happy life? Objective vs Subjective Views
  • 8:50 – 13:20 – What is a meaningful life? Does meaning differ from happiness?
  • 13:20 – 17:03 – Who knows best about our own happiness? Can scientists tell if we are happy?
  • 17:03 – 25:25 – The distinction between occurrent (in the moment) happiness and dispostitional (predictive) happiness
  • 25:25 – 37:05 – The danger of scientists thinking they know best about occurrent happiness
  • 37:05 – 46:20 – Could scientists know best about dispositional happiness?
  • 46:20 – 56:05 – Neuroplasticity and the normative value of facts about the brain
  • 56:05 – 1:01:45 – What if technology allows us to change everything about ourselves?
  • 1:01:45 -1:05:40 – Nicole’s opposition to radical transhumanism
  • 1:05:40 – 1:13:50 – How should we think about transformative change?
  • 1:13:50 – End – How should society regulate technologies that allow for transformative change?

Relevant Links


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