The Responsibility working group is led by Prof Eva Loth and Dr Liz Burchell, with guidance from Bioethicist Prof Ilina Singh and the Neurodiversity and Participatory Research Committee and members. This group identifies research priorities and challenges for the responsible development and use of neurotechnologies, and aims to develop principles of how to address them. The results of this priority setting exercise will directly feed into all other working groups.
Co-leading on the MRI subcommittee is Dr Jonathan O’Muircheartaigh (King’s College London) and Dr Jennifer Cooke (King’s College London). Co-leading on the EEG subcommittee is Dr Lorenzo Fabrizi (UCL) and Dr Kimberley Whitehead (King’s College London). Co-leading on the fNIRS subcommittee is Dr Paola Pinti (Birkbeck\UCL) and Prof. Ilias Tachtsidis (Institute UCL).
The steering committee have set-up working groups to start drafting a white paper on the topic of “Reliability of Neurotechnologies in Neurodevelopmental Research and Clinical Applications.” You can join this working group by becoming a member of the network and expressing your interest or existing members can use the contact form to specify and update their preferences.
Increasing the reliability of data acquisition and analysis are key to detecting early differences in brain and cognitive development. The network will work towards establishing standardising approaches within technologies, such as EEG, fNRIS, fMRI, MEG, ultrasound, eye-tracking or apps but also across technologies to improve comparability of data acquired by different teams or in different settings. For example, one of the goals of the network is to work towards a consensus as a community about what is the most reliable method for pre-processing and analysis of neuroimaging data when looking at neurodevelopment applications. From this we can identify the common challenges of assessing reliability across the board and learn from each other.
Prof Ilias Tachtsidis (co-chair) – Professor of biomedical engineering and an expert in neuroimaging and optical methods. He is a senior member of the Biomedical Optics Research Laboratory and leads the MultiModal Spectroscopy group at University College London
Dr. Paola Pinti (co-chair) – Senior Research Laboratory Developer at Birkbeck, University of London, and Honorary Research Associate at University College London, UK. Expert in the use of fNIRS to study brain activity from infancy to adulthood as well as algorithm development and data analytics.
Dr. Chiara Bulgarelli (co-chair) – Leverhulme Trust Early Career Research Fellow at Birkbeck, University of London, UK. Expert in the use of fNIRS to study brain development from infancy to toddlerhood as well as in fNIRS-based functional connectivity methods.
Prof. Lauren Emberson – Associate Professor at University of British Columbia, Canada. Expert in the use of fNIRS to study brain development in preterm babies and young infants as well as data analytics and standardization.
Dr. Frédéric Lange – Senior Research Associate at University College London, UK. Expert in NIRS hardware development and testing, phantoms, as well as application of optical technologies on developmental populations.
The scalability working group has established a core committee of Dr Tomoki Arichi, Professor David Delpy, Professor Sean Deoni, Professor Tim Smith, and Dr Paola Pinti. The key priorities and objectives of the working group have been discussed. Scalability can have different meanings in different contexts, each with their own specific implications for the field. The group have been working on what the “scalability” term means to their field to ensure that the working group can be inclusive and representative of all stakeholders.
Through multi-model integration of technologies we can make devices more wearable and mobile.
The Personalisation Working Group aspires to move away from one-size-fits-all neurotechnology and towards more inclusive and adaptable technology for neurodivergent individuals across developmental stages. Examples of relevant tools include eye-tracking, smart suits, questionnaires, and neuroimaging methods such as electro-encephalography and functional near-infra red spectroscopy (optical imaging), and their accompanying experimental paradigms.
The group aims to identify challenges and opportunities for new neurodevelopmental tools or analytic approaches that could enable personalised prognosis or support planning. In conversation with the industry, stakeholders and families, the group will identify priorities for personalisation in neurodevelopment research and explore ethical considerations.