Science in Society: Fragility

Event Information

Share this event

Date and Time



Event description



Join us for a Zooming conversation with Virtual Virtuosos Dr. John Doyle (Caltech), Lord Martin Rees (Cambridge), and Dr. Terrence Sejnowski (Salk Institute/UC San Diego).

A crisis turns a penetrating light on the fragility of a society. The pandemic pandemonium caused by COVID-19 has revealed cracks in the global economy, globalization strategies and inequality. Life under lockdown, going viral and virtual, has revealed that these are not the only cracks lurking in our future. The vogue for Camus' The Plague and The Myth of Sisyphus has evoked feverish examination of the meaning of life - and what science has to offer.

John Doyle is a control engineer who sees these cracks as a consequence of tradeoffs between efficiency and resilience. Martin Rees is co-Founder of the Centre for the Study of Existential Risks in Cambridge, and author most recently of On the Future: Prospects for Humanity and will put the pandemic into the perspective of other existential threats that we face. Terry Sejnowski is a pioneering computational neuroscientist and author of The Deep Learning Revolution and will explain what remedies AI might offer a species in deep trouble.

We will learn a lot from COVID-19 about our world, about failed policies and future prospects, perhaps converting doom sayers into prophets of possibility - as we carefully probe FRAGILITY.

Registration required. Zoom link will be sent out via email ahead of the webinar.

With Roger Bingham (Collaboratory Director). Sponsored by the Institute for Neural Computation (INC). Questions: Please contact Megan Ensminger,

Made possible by generous funding from the UC San Diego Office of the Chancellor (Dr. Pradeep Khosla), UC San Diego Academic Affairs (Executive Vice Chancellor Dr. Elizabeth H. Simmons), the Legler Benbough Foundation (Peter Ellsworth); Koret Foundation (UC President Emeritus Richard C. Atkinson); Learning How To Learn (Dr. Terrence Sejnowski); UC San Diego Research Affairs (Dr. Sandra Brown) and Vice Chancellor of Health Sciences (Drs. David Brenner and Douglas Ziedonis); and Kavli Institute for Brain & Mind (KIBM - Dr. Nicholas Spitzer).

Brain image and logo by Marley Rossa.

Share with friends

Date and Time


Save This Event

Event Saved