In this post, Rie Iizuka (Kansai University) reports on a held three-day workshop on epistemic paternalism and enhancement, entitled "Striving for perfection". This workshop was held online in February 2021, organised by Rie, as a part of her research on epistemic paternalism funded by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.
Day 1-Epistemic Nudging
Emma Gordon (Glasgow University) has shown a dilemma inherent in pharmacological cognitive enhancement. Her research is conducted in collaboration with Lucy Dunn (Glasgow University Medical School). When one achieves epistemically (e.g., acquiring knowledge) with the help of an enhancement drug, such an achievement seems to be primarily attributed to the drug than ourselves. We can avoid this cheapened achievement problem by claiming that success is ours when enhancement is adequately integrated into our cognitive architectures. On one hand, proper integration requires systematic and long-term use of enhancement drugs in such a way we understand the effect of such medications reliably, but on the other hand, constant use of cognitive enhancement drugs will have severe consequences, such as physiological and psychological dependence.