Help us Occupy the Future! By supporting the IEET you are making a commitment to hope and reason, science and optimism, to flourishing, free, diverse, resilient and sustainable societies.
Last year we asked
Does the future seem exciting to you? With new technologies, new hopes for human potential, and potentially even new kinds of humans?
Or does the future seem challenging? With widening gaps between rich and poor? Species loss and climate change? Authoritarian governments who might prevent the use of enhancement and other technologies?
What a difference a year makes! The Arab Spring and then the Occupy movement have exploded into a thousand proliferating points of optimistic resistance around the world, from Oakland to Moscow. An attractive sustainable future seems much more plausible now than it did a year ago.
Still, in the midst of persistent unemployment the policy debate refuses to confront the structural unemployment caused by, and sure to be deepened by, automation and AI. Policy makers are slashing biomedical research support precisely at the time when a couple of billions of dollars spent on anti-aging therapy research could save the world trillions of dollars in nursing and medical costs.
The IEET’s combination of technoprogressive values, near-futurism and practical policy focus is needed now more than ever.
Here at the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies, we’re taking a close look at what the biggest developments might be over the next few decades and how they will affect humans and our societies. Our distinctive role is that we take the far-reaching impacts of transformative technologies seriously, unlike many ethics and public policy organizations, and then we ask the tough political questions that many futurist and tech-enthusiast groups don’t.
With that unique niche, and with the dozens of diverse scholars and activists we’ve gathered in the global IEET community, no other organization is as well-positioned as we are to make a difference by promoting ethical policies that encourage the rapid, safe, and effective use of emerging technologies for the benefit of everyone. It is important work, vital work, and we are very happy to do it.
In the coming year we will be changing and growing, in ways that we will announce soon.
In March we will be co-sponsoring the first ever conference on “moral enhancement,” the use of neurotechnologies to improve moral sentiment, cognition and behavior. The ramifications of the moral enhancement debate extend from children’s rights, criminal rehabilitation and the freedom of conscience, to the most profound challenges to our political and psychological way of life. Through the Cyborg Buddha project we intend to defend the liberatory uses of neurotechnology, while challenging the incipient threats to cognitive liberty.
But our work can’t be done without your support.
Luckily, a few large contributors have helped us with major gifts. But to maintain our tax-exempt status with the US government (we’re registered as a 501(c)3 in the state of Connecticut), we are required to get at least one-third of our funding from individuals who make small contributions (less than a $1000). People like you, giving $500 or $50 a year.
Without your support, we will lose our legal status as a nonprofit organization. It’s that simple. We need whatever you can give. It doesn’t have to be a lot, and we understand that for many of you it can’t be a $1000. But please consider whatever level of tax-deductible donation you can afford.
You’ve already set yourself apart as someone who is aware of and interested in the big changes that are coming in the future. You’ve shown that you understand the need to think seriously about the huge challenges we face and the powerful new technologies that could make the years ahead much brighter for all of us, or possibly much darker if bad choices are made.
Please join those who are committed to a future of hope and reason, of science and optimism, of flourishing and sustainable societies. We want you as part of our giving community.
Thanks in advance for your support. It’s not only welcome. It’s essential.
And happy holidays! Occupy the Eggnog!
* Those who prefer not to donate online can send a check to “IEET” to the office of IEET Executive Director James Hughes at this address:
300 Summit St.
Hartford, CT 06106