Stakeholder perspectives and reactions to “academic” cognitive enhancement: unsuspected meaning of ambivalence and analogies

Forlini, Cynthia and Racine, Eric (2012) Stakeholder perspectives and reactions to “academic” cognitive enhancement: unsuspected meaning of ambivalence and analogies. Public Understanding of Science, 21 5: 606-625. doi:10.1177/0963662510385062

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Author Forlini, Cynthia
Racine, Eric
Title Stakeholder perspectives and reactions to “academic” cognitive enhancement: unsuspected meaning of ambivalence and analogies
Journal name Public Understanding of Science   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0963-6625
1361-6609
Publication date 2012-07
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1177/0963662510385062
Open Access Status File (Author Post-print)
Volume 21
Issue 5
Start page 606
End page 625
Total pages 20
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher Sage
Language eng
Abstract The existence of diverging discourses in the media and academia on the use of prescription medications to improve cognition in healthy individuals, i.e. “cognitive enhancement” (CE) creates the need to better understand perspectives from stakeholders. This qualitative focus-group study examined perspectives from students, parents and healthcare providers on CE. Stakeholders expressed ambivalence regarding CE (i.e. reactions to, definitions of, risks, and benefits). They were reluctant to adopt analogies to performance-enhancing steroids and caffeine though these analogies were useful in discussing concepts common to the use of different performance-enhancing substances. Media coverage of CE was criticized for lack of scientific rigor, ethical clarity, and inadvertent promotion of CE. Ambivalence of stakeholders suggests fundamental discomfort with economic and social driving forces of CE. Forms of public dialogue that voice the unease and ambivalence of stakeholders should be pursued to avoid opting hastily for permissive or restrictive health policies for CE.
Keyword Ambivalence
Cognitive enhancement
Focus groups
Media coverage
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: UQ Centre for Clinical Research Publications
 
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 10 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 18 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Tue, 06 May 2014, 14:21:27 EST by Cynthia Forlini on behalf of UQ Centre for Clinical Research