Martin Rees on Fragility - In Conversation on Collaboratory: Science in Society

30 June 2020

Collaboratory: Science in Society -- Fragiity

Join us for a Zooming conversation with Virtual Virtuosos Dr. John Doyle (Caltech), Lord Martin Rees (Cambridge), Patricia Churchland (UC San Diego), and Dr. Terrence Sejnowski (Salk Institute and UC San Diego). A crisis turns a penetrating light on the fragility of a society. The pandemic pandemonium caused by COVID-19 has revealed cracks in the global economy, globalization strategies and inequality. Life under lockdown, going viral and virtual, has revealed that these are not the only cracks lurking in our future. The vogue for Camus’ The Plague and The Myth of Sisyphus has evoked feverish examination of the meaning of life - and what science has to offer. John Doyle is a control engineer who sees these cracks as a consequence of tradeoffs between efficiency and resilience. Martin Rees is co-Founder of the Centre for the Study of Existential Risks in Cambridge, and author most recently of On the Future: Prospects for Humanity and will put the pandemic into the perspective of other existential threats that we face. Terry Sejnowski is a pioneering computational neuroscientist and author of The Deep Learning Revolution and will explain what remedies AI might offer a species in deep trouble. We will learn a lot from COVID-19 about our world, about failed policies and future prospects, perhapsconverting doom sayers into prophets of possibility -- as we carefully probe FRAGILITY.

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