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Technology, fear and evidence

31 March 2010

Dr Vaughan Bell from the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, presented to the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Scientific Research in Learning and Education this month, alongside Baroness Susan Greenfield, Professor of Synaptic Pharmacology at Oxford University and member of the House of Lords.

At, the discussion entitled 'What is the potential impact of technology, such as computer gaming, on the brain?” and before a packed committee room, Dr Bell inspected the breadth of empirical research available and emphasised that research needs to focus on the content and age appropriateness of the games and how children may substitute other social and physical activities by engaging in computer gaming.'

Dr Bell said: 'I discussed some of the key findings from the last few decades of research in this area and evidence that the internet seems to be benign or beneficial for the social lives of the majority of young people who use it.'

He continues: 'Baroness Greenfield and I agreed that children should benefit from their contact with technology although we disagreed in other areas. Discussion was lively and constructive and it was a genuine pleasure to meet her.'

Dr Bell writes about his experience in the blog Mindhacks where he also thanks the Institute of Psychiatry for its commitment to public and policy engagement.



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