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Progress: 96.88%   WWI-WE Version: 5
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Mapping Weak Signals

Inspired by: FP7 » Human Enhancements

version: 5 / updated: 2011-01-27
id: #1521 / version id: #49
mode: VIEW

Originally submitted by: Cornelia Daheim
List of all contributors by versions (mouse over)
Last changed by: Sivert von Saldern
WI-WE status:

Source of inspiration

European Commission Framework Programme for RTD (FP7)

Theme/activity of inspiration

Theme 1 - Health

Sub-theme/area of inspiration

Other actions across health themes

Uploaded reports, images or pictures related to the Weak Signal

File name File type File size
Human-Enhancements.jpg image 257706 open

Signal's headline

(max. 9 words)
Human Enhancements

Signal's description

(approx. 150 words)
Please describe the Weak Signal (approx. 150 words)
Increasing research on enhancing human performance: e.g. modification of biochemical processes in the body, implants for monitoring body status and releasing drugs as well as nanotech-enhanced tissue, bones and brain.


human performance, body enhancements, implants, body status, tissue


(max. 250 characters)
Research on enhancing human performance becomes more and more popular: e.g. modification of biochemical processes in the body, implants for monitoring body status and releasing drugs as well as nanotech-enhanced tissue, bones and brain.

Signal's first apperance


Signal's potential evolution

It could lead to...
issue type of issue/development potential impact on society timeframe for the issue to become at least 50% probable
#1 WI: A new generation of soldiers with extraordinary abilities is built. Private persons invest in performance enhancing modifications. continuation

Under what assumption the Weak Signal might evolve.

further research on human enhancement and a lack of regulation


please specify
please select
Level 4: important for the whole world especiall for those that can afford such enhancements

Filters preventing the signal's monitoring

cultural/religious filters (values, traditions, faith, spiritual beliefs)
scientific filters (knowledge/technology access)

Key driving forces of this signal

Please use these boxes to provide up to 2 drivers of HIGH importance. Click on HELP to see examples:
Driver 1 Driver 2
Technological/Scientific without asking wether the result is actually desirable, research programms focus on this topic
Economic body enhancements promise to be a valuable future business opportunity

Major risks & opportunities associated to the signal

Please choose the most appropriate timeframe option(s) to which you would like to provide inputs.
Risks Opportunities
between 2015-2025 people with disability could profit from research results
between 2025-2050 if results are implemented on a large scale, there will a huge gap between those with body enhancements and those without
beyond 2050 war could change as there could be soldiers with "super-natural abilities"

Potential stakeholders' actions

short-term actions
(after 2015)
Policy actors (at the international, European and national levels) watch the research programs and - if necessary - regulate research on body enhancement or business models making profit out of it
Academic/Research sector concentrate on desirable outcomes (e.g. support for people with disabilites)
General public have a public debate on what is desirable and where research might go too far

Signal's relevance for European Grand Challenges

where? please justify:
particularly relevant Europe world
Ageing and other demographic tensions
Diseases, health and well-being
Social exclusion & poverty
Social cohesion and diversity
Work-Life balance and mental health
Innovation dynamics

Signal's relevance for thematic research areas

please justify:
particularly relevant
ICT - Information & communication technologies
Nanosciences, nanotech, materials & new prod. tech.
Social Sciences and Humanities

Pan-European strategies influencing the signal

please justify:
particularly relevant
Increasing the efficiency and impact of public research through Joint Programming (i.e. combining national and pan-European research efforts) or the optimisation of research programmes and priorities, for example.

Research-friendly strategies potentially improving understanding of the signal

For further information about 'research-friendly strategies' click here
please justify:
particularly relevant
Creating a closer link between researchers & policy-makers
(e.g. supporting both thematic and cross-cutting policies, highlighting the strategic purpose of the European Research Area, etc.

Signal's relevance for future R&D and STI policies

Note: RTD = research and technology development; STI = science, technology and innovation
Research on qualitative management of body enhancement technologies has to be intensified. As in every other industry, there is a high probability of plagiarism regarding the supply of artificial body parts. Therefore, strict control regulations on the quality of processed material and production processes have to be implemented.