Understanding the human brain is one of the greatest challenges facing 21st century science. If we can rise to the challenge, we can gain profound insights into what makes us human, develop new treatments for brain disease and build revolutionary new computing technologies. Today, for the first time, modern ICT has brought these goals within sight.
The convergence between biology and ICT has reached a point at which it can turn the goal of understanding the human brain into a reality. It is this realisation that motivates the Human Brain Project – an EU Flagship initiative in which over 80 partners will work together to realise a new “ICT-accelerated” vision for brain research and its applications.
One of the major obstacles to understanding the human brain is the fragmentation of brain research and the data it produces. Our most urgent need is thus a concerted international effort that uses emerging ICT technologies to integrate this data in a unified picture of the brain as a single multi-level system.