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11 June 2008

Technology and the risks of global catastrophe

Filed under: risks, UKTA — David Wood @ 10:45 pm

I’m a passionate enthusiast about the capabilities of technologies. But at the same time, I’m keenly aware of the potential for technology to wreak havoc and destruction. So I’m eagerly looking forward to the UKTA technology debate on Saturday (14th June):

Technology risks and the survival of humanity: Is emerging technology more likely to destroy human civilisation or to radically enhance it?


This is taking place in Birkbeck College, central London, from 2pm-4pm. Everyone is welcome to attend – there’s no charge. (If you Facebook, you can RSVP here.)

This event will in some ways be a preview of a considerably longer event taking place in Oxford during July: The Future of Humanity Institute’s conference on “Global Catastrophic Risks“. Speakers at this later conference include:

  • Professor Jonathan Wiener, current President of the Society of Risk Analysis;
  • Professor Steve Rayner, Director of the James Martin Institute for Science and Civilisation;
  • Professor William Potter, Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey Institute of International Studies;
  • Sir Crispin Tickell, a leading authority on the interaction between science and global governance, and an advisor on climate change to successive British Prime Ministers;
  • Eliezer Yudkowsky, Research Fellow, Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence;
  • Mike Treder , co-founder and Executive Director, Center for Responsible Nanotechnology;
  • Professor Bill Napier , Honorary Professor, Institute for Astrobiology, Cardiff University.

I’m anticipating a lot of thought-provoking discussion. For this conference, advance registration is essential. There’s about a week left before registration closes.

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