My gut tells me that we'll have more success building an exact 1:1 copy of a brain, but from digital components rather than wetware. The discovery of memristors, and other yet to be discovered building blocks, may lead to just these types of advances.
If consciousness still doesn't emerge in such a 1:1 copy then that would be spooky.
 - http://www.frost.com/prod/servlet/cpo/205104793.htm
In a similar vein, we have succeeded in copying (digitizing) the full human genome. But, to actually do something with that requires an even greater tasks of understanding what all those genes in it actually mean (what the proteins they express do). For the brain we haven't done the former, let alone the latter. I believe there's more point in trying to understand the working of the brain or mind on a more abstract level.
Not to mention that simply building such a copy would yield its own set of insights.