Can neuroscience revolutionize psychiatry?

A New Foundation for Psychiatry?bbag-icon-dec

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Can neuroscience revolutionize psychiatry? This is what the National Institute of Mental Health hopes and why it has introduced its new Research Domain Criteria (RDoC). These criteria are to replace current diagnostic categories (as set out in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM) as the way to identify different patient groups for research purposes. The criteria reflect different domains of functioning, whether interpersonal, cognitive, or affective; studies should aim to understand the underlying neural mechanisms. While the NIMH is clear that these criteria are to be used for research, not clinical, purposes, the ultimate purpose of RDoC is to provide a foundation for a completely new system of psychiatric classification. In this talk, Dr. Bluhm will briefly describe the origins of RDoC and situate it in within the broader project of biological psychiatry. Dr. Bluhm will then consider some of the assumptions underlying RDoC and their possible ethical implications.


Join us for Robyn Bluhm’s lecture on Wednesday, January 27, 2016 from noon till 1 pm in person or online.

Robyn Bluhm, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy and Lyman Briggs College at Michigan State University. She received her doctorate in philosophy from the University of Western Ontario, where she also completed a postdoctoral fellowship in neuropsychiatry. Her research examines philosophical issues in science and medicine, with a particular focus on the relationship between ethical and epistemological questions arising in medical research or clinical practice. She has written extensively on the philosophy of evidence-based practice and on the use of functional neuroimaging in psychiatry research.

In person: This lecture will take place in C102 East Fee Hall on MSU’s East Lansing campus. Feel free to bring your lunch! Beverages and light snacks will be provided.

Online: Here are some instructions for your first time joining the webinar, or if you have attended or viewed them before, go to the meeting!

Can’t make it? All webinars are recorded! View our archive of recorded lectures.