Michael Burdett: Being Human in an Age of Technology: The Ethics of Artificial Intelligence

It is no secret that our world has become irrevocably transformed by technology. This increase in technological proliferation and its impact on just about every area of human life raises significant ethical questions about how we ought to use this technology and, more radically, how we ought to live well and flourish in a society increasingly impacted by this technology. I think we feel conflicted today. We all feel a sense of awe at what these technologies can achieve from letting the deaf hear to sending us into the far reaches of space. And yet we also feel a strong sense of anxiety; that we are somehow being pulled along faster and faster and cannot control this sense of technological advancement even when its promises are also met with failures and sacrifices along the way. How do we respond to these changes and indeed these dramatic challenges?

This talk will address four areas that require explicit personal, ethical and theological attention today:
(1) Gene Editing, Designer Babies and Human Enhancement
(2) Information Technology and Politics
(3) Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Human Relationships
(4) Technological Use and Personal Formation

Banner image by Giu Vicente on Unsplash.`