Gilbert et al. (Neuroethics, 2018) argue that the concerns about the influence of Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) on – as they lump together – personality, identity, agency, autonomy, authenticity and the self (PIAAAS) are due to an ethics hype. They argue that there is only a small empirical base for an extended ethics debate. We will critically examine their claims and argue that Gilbert and colleagues do not show that the identity debate in DBS is a bubble, they in fact give very little evidence for that. Rather they show the challenges of doing research in a field that is stretched out over multiple disciplines. In that sense their paper is an important starting point for a discussion on methodology and offers valuable lessons for a future research agenda.
Bibliographical noteThe authors would sincerely like to thank the two anonymous reviewers, who had great integrity, and provided some of the most engaged comments that we ever had from reviewers. For Sanneke de Haan this work is part of her research programme ‘Authenticity in psychiatry’ with project number 275-20-067, which is financed by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO).
© 2019, The Author(s).