What are human rights in the age of transhumanism?

Should thoughts be protected? A right to mental privacy may become necessary as new technologies in the field of neuroscience are developed.

Transhumanism is an approach that seeks to improve the human being's capacities and to push back its biological limits, including its cerebral and intellectual capacities. Neuro-technologies, which have recently undergone spectacular developments, open up new horizons for exploring the brain, communicating with it and treating neurological diseases. But this horizon is obscured by the inherent looming risks faster than we think: control of the human being by a machine or the access to his thoughts. Hence the urgent need there is to think about new human rights, "neuro-rights", an emerging category of rights designed to protect a person's cerebral and mental space. Father of the Cyborgs looks back at the first implantations of electronic chips in a human brain. Carried out by the American Phil Kennedy on a paralysed patient and on himself.


Monday 7 March


Espace Pitoëff - Théâtre

Followed by the debate What are human rights in the age of transhumanism ?

French - English

Co-presented with Euronews


Olaf Blanke Doctor, Neurologist and Neuroscientist

Marcello Ienca Researcher at the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences at the EPFL, specialist in ethics and biomedical data and emerging technologies concerning the human-computer interface

Nita Farahany Professor of Law and Philosophy at the Duke University, specialist in the ramifications of new technologies for society, law and ethics

Moderated by

Olivier Dessibourg Executive Director, Science Communication and Outreach, Geneva Science and Diplomacy Anticipator (GESDA)

To go further

“Qu'est-ce que l'intelligence artificielle ?“ dans NetApp.

“Le transhumanisme“ dans FranceInter, 1 mars 2018

This debat is preceded by the movie:

Compétition - Grand ReportageFilms en VOD

Father of the Cyborgs

By David Burke

In 2014, neurologist Phil Kennedy shocked the world when he travelled to Belize to implant an electrode in his brain, thus becoming 'the father of the Cyborgs'. Whether a genius pioneer or a mad scientist, Kennedy has never ceased to stretch the boundaries of science. But he also poses a crucial question: by modifying our bodies and brains, do we become superhuman or rather grow dependent on machines that could go wrong at any moment?

  • Section Competition - Grand Reportage & Films in VOD
  • Original language(s) English
  • Subtitle(s) French


David Burke


  • David Burke
  • Sean O’cualain

World sales

  • Cargo Film & Releasing


  • Colm Hogan, Jj Rolfe, Keith Pendred


  • Alan Poole


  • Cara Holmes
Production country
Swiss Premiere