Ethical Database for Brain Scan Imaging

Why We Need Guidelines for Brain Scan Data
by Evan D. Morris, Ph.D.


Brain scans, aided by AI, reveal as much about you as your DNA. Grappling with their ethical implications is vital to scientific integrity.

Morris 2019

After last week’s reading about the privacy of birthdays and control over personal information I thought of this article from Wired Magazine written by a professor from Yale. Morris discusses the ethical need for a better knowledge organization system that protects the privacy of patients and their brain scan imaging. He brings up an interesting point that many brain imaging research is funded by National Institutes of Health (NIH), some of which require research to be held in an NIH database without ethical consideration for who accesses the data.

As brain imaging technology advances–such as predicting behavioral traits–so does the access to that information, potentially without the contest of the patient. He draws comparisons between DNA databases used by police to the potentiality of brain scans utilized by those in positions of authority.  What would an ethical knowledge organization system that catalogs and houses brain scans be structured?

Hilary Wang
INFO 653-01


Morris, Evan D. (2019 September, 17). Why We Need Guidelines for Brain Scan Data. Wired. Retrieved from

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