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Human Performance OptimizationThe Science and Ethics of Enhancing Human Capabilities$
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Michael D. Matthews and David M. Schnyer

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190455132

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190455132.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 28 November 2020

The Ethics of Human Enhancement

The Ethics of Human Enhancement

An Overview and Framework

(p.403) 18 The Ethics of Human Enhancement
Human Performance Optimization

Janice H. Laurence

Joshua A. Carlisle

Oxford University Press

This chapter raises some ethical considerations and highlights the debate regarding the burgeoning field of human enhancement (HE) and performance optimization. The topic of human enhancement is complex because it gets to the heart of what we take to be the central concerns of ethics, involving concepts such as human nature, identity, fairness, dignity, virtue, and duties to our offspring and fellow beings. This chapter proposes a framework for discussing the ethics of human enhancement. It serves both as a structure for understanding current issues and debates and as a guide for stakeholders to use in making decisions about the ethics of particular HE interventions. In doing so, the ethical framework described borrows from Just War Theory (JWT), an adjacent field of applied ethics. Just Enhancement Theory (JET) provides key considerations that are necessary to argue that a particular HE intervention or class of interventions is morally permissible. Such a framework could help stakeholders navigate the complexities of the moral terrain as they make important decisions and contributions in this increasingly important area.

Keywords:   ethics, human enhancement, performance optimization, Just War Theory, Just Enhancement Theory

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