Human Enhancement: legal analysis complete!

2019-05-20

SIENNA partners have completed their research on legal developments and human rights challenges related to human enhancement technologies. We have covered the legal developments on the international level and in the EU, and completed 12 country studies of the national level, looking at the relevant laws and human rights standards. 

Human Enhancement TechnologiesOur studies in Brazil, China, France, Germany, Greece, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, United Kingdom, and the US reveal how these countries have dealt with challenges arising from the development and wider use of HETs.

We looked at legal issues raised by these technologies, including human rights implications, both supporting their use and limiting such uses due to concerns for human rights abuses. More specifically we discussed civil liability for enhancement technologies, issues related to property, such as ownership and patents, security and criminal liability issues; questions raised in the context of employment law, such as safe work practice, pressure to enhance and risk of discrimination; and issues related to family law, including children’s rights, parental responsibility and authority. In our legal research, human rights are considered the touchstone for regulation and are treated as setting standards for other laws. The impact of the development and use of human enhancement technologies on human rights makes international human rights law a natural starting point for setting legal standards.

Right now, the results are with the European Commission. Going forward, the results will feed into forthcoming SIENNA work to help determine how to enhance existing legal frameworks. To identify such changes and future actions, SIENNA will engage with, and welcomes input from policy-makers, legislators, regulators and legal scholars

By Zuzanna Warso, zuzanna.warso@hfhr.pl

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