The Rise of Human Consciousness

The Rise of Human Consciousness

Monday, May 23, 2016

The New York Academy of Sciences

Presented By

The New York Academy of Sciences

 

An archived recording of this event is available via Livestream under "Archived Events" at:

https://livestream.com/newyorkacademyofsciences

A podcast of this event is available for download here.

Over the past few decades, advances in physical and information sciences, biology, and neuroscience have dramatically enhanced our knowledge of the human species. But can physical sciences solve the biggest mystery—the emergence of human consciousness? Can consciousness be reduced to electrical and chemical processes that occur in a vast, intricately connected collection of neurons? This panel will bring together physicists, historians, cognitive scientists, and mathematicians to explore the questions: Does consciousness emerge solely from matter? Does consciousness cease completely when biological systems supporting it stop functioning? Does today's science possess tools to answer these questions definitively? And when we obtain answers to these questions, what are the implications for human existence and ethics? Join our panel to explore this question and its implications.

* Reception to follow.

Featuring

David Chalmers, PhD

Co-Director, Center for Mind, Brain and Consciousness, New York University

Michael Graziano, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, Princeton University; author of Consciousness and the Social Brain

Hod Lipson, PhD

Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Columbia University; author of Fabricated: The New World of 3D Printing

Max Tegmark, PhD

Professor, Department of Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Moderator

George Musser, PhD

Contributing Editor at Scientific American; author of Spooky Action at a Distance and The Complete Idiot's Guide to String Theory

Registration — Individual Lecture Prices

Member$5
Member (Student / Postdoc / Resident / Fellow)$5
Nonmember$15
Nonmember (Student / Postdoc / Resident / Fellow)$7

Livestream

This panel will be presented at no charge via Livestream. To view the Livestream or add it to your calendar, use this link: https://livestream.com/newyorkacademyofsciences



The event is part of the Physics of Everything series.

This six-part series will unite some of the most vibrant public intellectuals and communicators of today—from scientists to philosophers, and ethicists to educators—for explorations that reflect on the current state of modern physical sciences.

To learn more about each lecture and to purchase tickets, click on the links below.



Contact Us

Jennifer Costley, PhD

Director, Physical Sciences, Sustainability & Engineering
212.298.8675
jcostley@nyas.org

Featuring

David Chalmers, PhD

Co-Director, Center for Mind, Brain and Consciousness, New York University

David Chalmers is University Professor of Philosophy and co-director of the Center for Mind, Brain, and Consciousness at New York University, and also holds a part-time position at the Australian National University. He is well-known for his work on consciousness, especially for his formulation of the "hard problem" of consciousness.

His 1996 book The Conscious Mind: In Search of a Fundamental Theory was successful with both popular and academic audiences. Chalmers co-founded the Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness and has organized some of the most important conferences in the field. He also works on many other issues in philosophy and cognitive science, and has articles on the possibility of a "singularity" in artificial intelligence and on philosophical issues arising from the movie The Matrix.

Michael Graziano, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, Princeton University

Michael Graziano is a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Princeton University. He is an author of novels, children's books, and books on the brain. He is known for his work on how the brain represents the space near the body and controls complex movement within that space. More recently he has worked on the brain basis of conscious experience, and his most recent book is Consciousness and the Social Brain.

Hod Lipson, PhD

Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Columbia University; author of Fabricated: The New World of 3D Printing

Max Tegmark, PhD

Professor, Department of Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Max Tegmark is a Professor of Physics at MIT, co-founder of the Future of Life Institute, and Scientific Director of the Foundational Questions Institute. His research has ranged from cosmology to the physics of cognitive systems, and is currently focused at the interface between physics, AI and neuroscience. He is the author of over 200 publications and the book Our Mathematical Universe: My Quest for the Ultimate Nature of Reality. His work with the Sloan Digital Sky Survey on galaxy clustering shared the first prize in Science magazine's "Breakthrough of the Year: 2003."

Moderator

George Musser, PhD

Contributing Editor at Scientific American

George Musser is a contributing editor at Scientific American magazine, a Knight Science Journalism Fellow at MIT for 2014–2015, and the author of Spooky Action at a Distance (2015) and The Complete Idiot's Guide to String Theory (2008). Although he focuses on space science and fundamental physics, his writings range widely over the sciences. He has won numerous awards for his work, including the 2011 Science Writing Award from the American Institute of Physics and 2010 Jonathan Eberhart Planetary Sciences Journalism Award from the American Astronomical Society. As a Scientific American senior editor for 14 years, he was co-awarded the National Magazine Award in 2003 and 2011.

Sponsors

Presented by

  • The New York Academy of Sciences

Grant Support

  • Templeton Foundation

This project was made possible through the support of a grant from the John Templeton Foundation. The opinions expressed in this event are those of the speaker(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the John Templeton Foundation.

Promotional Partner

Chaos, Solitons & Fractals

Travel & Lodging

Our Location

The New York Academy of Sciences

7 World Trade Center
250 Greenwich Street, 40th floor
New York, NY 10007-2157
212.298.8600

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