We live during the most important era of human history. In the twentieth century, we developed the means to destroy ourselves – without developing the moral framework to ensure we won’t. This is the Precipice, and how we respond to it will be the most crucial decision of our time.
In this week’s podcast, Oxford moral philosopher Toby Ord explores the risks to humanity’s future, from the familiar man-made threats of climate change and nuclear war, to the potentially greater, more unfamiliar threats from engineered pandemics and advanced artificial intelligence. Can we protect the legacy of the hundred billion who have come before us, and secure a future for the trillions that could follow? What can we do, in our present moment, to face the risks head on?
Praise for Toby Ord’s The Precipice:
“A powerfully argued book that alerts us to what is perhaps the most important – and yet also most neglected – problem we will ever face” Peter Singer, author of Animal Liberation and The Life You Can Save
“The Precipice separates science from hype and will remain the definitive work on existential risk for a long time to come” – Max Tegmark, author of Life 3.0 and Our Mathematical Universe