Honestly, I’m Not Lying
by Amielle Moreno
Speer et al presented a well designed human neuroscience study to determine the seat of moral control. Instead, they found that while the moral default of the individual was stable, an area in the midfrontal brain region increased its theta power when the individual strayed from that default.
The electrode called Fz and indeed a number of neighboring electrodes in the EEG cap displayed a similar change in power when participants were exercising cognitive control in one task, and when deciding to be honest or not in another task.
In Episode 27 of the Miss Behavior Journal Club, the feature journal article discuses the complex set of controls, range of participant’s willingness to cheat and how these finding could apply to future non-correlational work. By publishing this important replication study the Journal of Neuroscience sets a new prerogative in favor of replaceable research.
Human Neuroscience Research on Honesty
“Here, we extend prior research by providing more rigorous evidence by means of explicitly eliciting cognitive control in a separate localizer task and then demonstrating that the same neural signature can be identified in the Spot-The-Difference task when participants are exposed to the opportunity to cheat.” -Speer et al.-