'Critical technology: Is technological risk the main threat to the survival of humanity? Or do we need to rely on technology to survive?' - Workshop

Past Event

25 November 2016, 5:30pm - 8:45pm

Seminar Room, Oxford Martin School
34 Broad Street, (Corner of Catte and Holywell Street), Oxford, OX1 3BD

This workshop is organised by The Future of Humanity Institute and TORCH 'Crisis, Extremes and Apocalypse' research network


4.30- 5.00 pm

  • Dr Anders Sandberg, Oxford Martin Senior Fellow, Future of Humanity Institute
    Apocalypse 2.0: existential risks, technology, and the problem of forethought

Many cultures have delighted in expecting the end of the world as they know it. But as technology advances, so does our own responsibility for both being the potential cause of the end and doing something about various risks. This talk will discuss what we know about the interplay between human ability and the prospects of averting bad futures.

5.00 – 5.30 pm

  • Dr Eric Drexler, Oxford Martin Senior Fellow, Future of Humanity Institute, Future of Humanity Institute
    Structured Transparency: Surveillance, civil society, AI, and existential risk

To suppress existential risks from rogue actors may require strong transparency, but how might this be reconciled with privacy and institutional accountability? Novel, technology-enabled transparency structures could provide better solutions than have yet been considered.

5.30- 6.00 pm

  • Dr Joss Wright, Research Fellow, Oxford Internet Institute
    Urizen's Web: Transparency, Freedom, and Control

‘Information technologies form an indispensible part of our lives, social interactions, and means of assessing and processing the world around us. As we move through this increasingly information-focused world, however, we leave traces that are themselves analysed and employed to influence
our choices and opportunities. This talk will consider freedom and growth in an inexorably transparent and algorithmic world, and question how we can reconcile this probable future with the essential
inconsistency and chaos of humanity.’

6. 00- 6.10 pm Coffee break

6.10- 6.40 pm

  • Miles Brundage, AI Policy Research Fellow, Future of Humanity Institute

Developments in artificial intelligence pose many risks as well as opportunities over the long term. What can be done now or in the future to ensure maximum benefits and minimum risks from the transition to an era of advanced AI? I will distinguish between short and long term AI policy considerations, and summarize some current lines of research at the Future of Humanity Institute aimed at laying the groundwork for long term AI policy.’

6.40 pm – 7.10 pm

  • Dr Owain Evans, Alexander Tamas Initiative on Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
    Discussion of the general risks and benefits of AI technologies

7.10 pm- 7.40 pm General discussion with questions from the audience

For all inquiries, please contact Audrey Borowski at audrey.borowski@history.ox.ac.uk