In the 21st century, main focus of neuroscience research has been shifted from basic understanding of neural function in animal subjects to applied neuroscience research, i.e., human brain mapping and neurotechnology. The progress of these research fields may bring us potential fears of military use or misuse of neuroscience research results, and neuroethics may contribute the better solution of these critical issues. Public engagement of neuroscience is one of the important topics of neuroethics. It contains literacy of neuroscience for general public and interactive communication between neuroscientists and citizens. In this context, both quantitative and qualitative investigation of public understanding of neuroscience, including basic knowledge and trends in current neuroscience research and development would be necessary to think more about an effective implication of science communication on neuroscience community. Nevertheless, there were few numbers of studies examining the neuroscience literacy of general public. In the present study, Neuroethics Research Group in Japan (NeRGJ) of Japan Children's Study (JCS) developed their own survey questionnaire to assess the public understanding, image, and acceptance of neuroscience research and cohort/cognitive neuroscience joint research for infants in Japan. Subjects aged twenty to sixty-nine old years were the target population in this survey. We compare the results from another survey research done by applied genomic science research project in Japan. We also discuss how neuroscientist brush up their communication skills to general public and to what extent science media contributes more effective public engagement in neuroscience.

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Public engagement in neuroscience and cohort studies for children in Japan

Tamami Fukushi   JST

In the 21st century, main focus of neuroscience research has been shifted from basic understanding of neural function in animal subjects to applied neuroscience research, i.e., human brain mapping and neurotechnology. The progress of these research fields may bring us potential fears of military use or misuse of neuroscience research results, and neuroethics may contribute the better solution of these critical issues. Public engagement of neuroscience is one of the important topics of neuroethics. It contains literacy of neuroscience for general public and interactive communication between neuroscientists and citizens. In this context, both quantitative and qualitative investigation of public understanding of neuroscience, including basic knowledge and trends in current neuroscience research and development would be necessary to think more about an effective implication of science communication on neuroscience community. Nevertheless, there were few numbers of studies examining the neuroscience literacy of general public. In the present study, Neuroethics Research Group in Japan (NeRGJ) of Japan Children's Study (JCS) developed their own survey questionnaire to assess the public understanding, image, and acceptance of neuroscience research and cohort/cognitive neuroscience joint research for infants in Japan. Subjects aged twenty to sixty-nine old years were the target population in this survey. We compare the results from another survey research done by applied genomic science research project in Japan. We also discuss how neuroscientist brush up their communication skills to general public and to what extent science media contributes more effective public engagement in neuroscience.

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