Correspondence | Published:

European research

Brain project leaders need an open mind

Nature volume 511, page 292 (17 July 2014) | Download Citation

As neuroscientists in Europe who care about the success of research projects large and small in our field, we are dismayed by the publicly reported attitude of the leaders of the Human Brain Project (HBP) towards scientists who have expressed widely supported criticisms of the project in an open letter (; see also Nature 511, 125 and 133–134; 2014 ).

Instead of acknowledging that there is a problem and genuinely seeking to address scientists' concerns, the project leaders seem to be of the opinion that the letter's 580 signatories are misguided.

The explicit supposition of the HBP leaders that some aspects of neuroscience research could be done in a different way than in the past deserves respect. However, mindful of the sincerity of a number of the well-regarded neuroscientists who have signed the letter as of 11 July, we submit that the likelihood of all 500+ being misguided is remote.

A more enquiring and open-minded attitude to the concerns expressed may prove to be in the best interests of both the information-technology and neuroscience communities.

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    • Richard Morris

    On behalf of 6 correspondents (see Supplementary information for full list).


  1. University of Edinburgh, UK.

    • Richard Morris


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Correspondence to Richard Morris.

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