LAW & Neuroscience
As far back as he can remember, Randy Hopper has had a curiosity and passion for neuroscience and the human brain. In tandem with building a successful legal practice, over the past three decades, Mr. Hopper has independently researched and studied the human brain, advances in neuroscience, neurosurgery and the possible implications of some of the more recent neurological discoveries, especially neuro-imaging technologies. To that end, Randy has been astounded by the tremendous leaps and bounds that have been made in the field of neuroscience over the past few decades. Such discoveries are having a profound effect on the interaction between neuroscience and the law and are calling for a new neuro-ethic to guide decision-making by judges, lawyers and policy makers.
Specifically, Mr. Hopper is interested in the many probable implications these advances in brain science will have on business ethics, the civil & criminal justice system, litigation strategy, and predictions and explanations of behavior, which were not previously available until the recent emergence of a greater understanding of the way the brain functions and dysfunctions. Mr. Hopper is working to implement his knowledge of these new discoveries into his own law practice, as well as into the substance and curriculum of his lectures at the University of Minnesota Law School and at various institutions of higher education.
In 2013, Mr. Hopper had the honor of being invited as a guest lecturer at the Haslem School of Business at the University of Tennessee, lecturing on “Capitalism, Markets and Ethics – the Insights and Implications of Neuroscience," and in 2014 he was invited to speak
on “Neuroscience in the Coming Decades: Implications for the Law, Public Policy and Ethics”, in a colloquium at the UT College of Law and College of Arts and Sciences.
Additionally, over the past few years, Mr. Hopper has been working closely Stephen Haines M.D., Chair, Department of Neurosurgery, Clark Chen, M.D., Director of the Center for Brain Imaging and Magnetic Resonance at the University of Minnesota, Dr. Francis Shen, a McKnight Land-Grant Professor and Associate Professor of Law at the University of Minnesota, and other of University of Minnesota Departments in the medical sciences (including psychiatry, and neuroscience research) to develop a major initiative regarding neuroscience and the brain.
In 2017, Randy Hopper accepted a position as adjunct faculty at the University of Minnesota Law School where he co-teaches : “Neuroscience and the Law”.
In 2019, Randy Hopper was invited to join the advisory board at the Center for Law, Brain and Behavior at Harvard University, an organization that is a consortium of the Harvard Medical School, Harvard Law School and Massachusetts General Hospital at Harvard.
Dr. Karl Deisseroth – Neuroscience Collaboration
Randy Hopper met with Dr. Karl Deisseroth, who is a principal developer of Optogenetics technology at the Stanford University School of Medicine. Optogenetics is a cutting-edge brain technology used by neuroscientists in research and in clinical practice; cells are genetically modified to become light sensitive, allowing them to be controlled by carefully directed pulses of light. For several years now, Mr. Hopper has collaborated with chairs of Neurology, the Department of Neurosurgery, and Neuroscience at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
Dr. Deisseroth is also the principal developer of yet another neuroimaging/brain imaging technology called CLARITY. CLARITY allows practitioners to see through the brain by rendering the tissue transparent and is the first technology of its kind to allow for such images to be captured and viewed. Dr. Deisseroth is rumored to be amongst a short list of neuroscience innovators in the running for a Nobel Prize.
Randy Hopper, with Dr. Karl Deisseroth.
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