The Ethics Blog

A blog from the Centre for Research Ethics & Bioethics (CRB)

Philosophy on a chair

Philosophy is an unusual activity, partly because it can be conducted to such a large extent while sitting still. Philosophers do not need research vessels, laboratories or archives to work on their questions. Just a chair to sit on. Why is it like that? The answer is that philosophers examine our ways of thinking, and […]

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Artificial consciousness and the need for epistemic humility

As I wrote in previous posts on this blog, the discussion about the possibility of engineering an artificial form of consciousness is growing along with the impressive advances of artificial intelligence (AI). Indeed, there are many questions arising from the prospect of an artificial consciousness, including its conceivability and its possible ethical implications. We  deal […]

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Objects that behave humanly

Many forms of artificial intelligence could be considered objects that behave humanly. However, it does not take much for us humans to personify non-living objects. We get angry at the car that does not start or the weather that does not let us have a picnic, as if they were against us. Children spontaneously personify […]

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A way out of the Babylonian confusion of tongues in the theorizing of consciousness?

There is today a wide range of competing theories, each in its own way trying to account for consciousness in neurobiological terms. Parallel to the “Babylonian confusion of tongues” and inability to collaborate that this entails in the theorizing of consciousness, progress has been made in the empirical study of the brain. Advanced methods for […]

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