Let me start by apologizing for the rather radical shift in the nature of my post today, but this is actually a reflection of my ongoing scientific research. I do believe, however, that this shift presents itself quite appropriately.
Our technological apparatus is advancing in such a rapid pace that I believe human-machine symbiosis is becoming an increasingly critical phenomenon in our contemporary society. Herbert Marcuse (One-Dimentional Man, 1964) anticipated our need to reflect on the totalitarian character of technological rationality in advanced industrial societies. As far as I can tell, technologies such as artificial intelligence and human-machine integration is at the verge of transforming humans into a new life form – we’re becoming cyborgs. It only sounds reasonable to discuss the political implications of such extraordinary transformation.
For this reason, I would like to share Elon Musk’s Neuralink streaming that took place on this past July 16 2019. Musk is pushing forward with yet another incredible breakthrough technology!
I also recommend the following article written by Tim Urban on April 2017: Neuralink and the Brain’s Magical Future. It is quite a long read, but it is definitely entertaining and extremely informative, insightful and absolutely worth it for those who are interested in further understanding the broad aspects of advancements in cyborg technologies.
The increasing complexity in research and society is accelerating with new phenomena such as big data, digitization, migration flows, technologisation or even automation. As a result, science has an obligation to identify strategies for successfully dealing with complexity and solving complex problems. Examining these expectations is one of many starting points of the research project.
The overarching goal is to investigate different concepts of complexity and their theoretical justification from an interdisciplinary perspective and thus not only show new patterns for the practical handling of complexity, but also to gain new insights for the scientific research itself. A starting point of the project is the scientific-philosophical definition of complexity as a property of systems that show unexpected and unpredictable behavior due to the interaction of their elements, Interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary cooperation between the natural sciences and the humanities explores questions as to whether and how such a definition can apply and be applied to scientific systems as well as to cultural and social systems.
Development and operation of the project
Since the beginning of 2017, researchers from various disciplines at the Goethe University have collaborated in the project »Complexity in Science, Culture and Society«. After a successful pilot phase funded by the Aventis Foundation , the project was headed by Prof. Dr. med. Harald Schwalbe (chemistry) and Prof. dr. Matthias Lutz-Bachmann (Philosophy) another funding commitment from the Aventis Foundation for the period from 2019 to 2020.
The research group consists mainly of natural and life scientists from the Goethe University and the University of Darmstadt, but also from humanities scholars from other institutions in Germany and abroad. She meets regularly at the Research College Human Sciences of Goethe University (FKH), where the project is administratively located. In addition, joint workshops and lectures are organized, to which internationally renowned scientists are invited to discuss with the research group different aspects and topics in the context of the complexity question.
An important part of the project work are the Complexity Fellowships , in which international guest scientists are invited to the FKH. There, they will be given the opportunity for their own research and active participation in the questions and events of the project.