The Philosophy and Science of Existential Risk


The challenge posed by existential risk requires us to conceptualise and design a new science. This science will be highly interdisciplinary, both “vertically” – involving considerations ranging from theoretical to immediately practical – and “horizontally” – requiring key insights from across a wide range of disciplines. It will combine theoretical inputs from philosophy, economics, political theory, ecology, mathematics, as well as the theoretical face of the technologies under study – e.g. computer science, molecular biology, nanoscience. On the practical level, it involves political and social considerations (e.g. the influence of science on policy), as well as the practical impacts of each technology we study. As part of our research, we will embed existential risk researchers in leading laboratories and development teams working on the most promising and risky technologies, in order not only to fully understand their potentials, but also the culture in which they are being developed.


Posted: Wednesday 15 July 2015

Authors: Seán Ó hÉigeartaigh

Tags: technologyscienceriskresearchmediaai