Congress Program

Each year, the International Congress on Human Sciences attracts a diverse group of participants from around the world. Our program development team bases on this diversity to provide a rich and distinctive experience, including keynote speakers, lectures, workshops, exhibitions and social events. The congress program brings together presentations on similar topics to facilitate knowledge sharing and community building.

Come back soon for the latest updates on accepted proposals, plenary speakers, and featured events.

Accepted proposals

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Last update: October 16th, 2019

Highlighted Theme

Tema destacado 2019

Axiological reflections on transhumanism

Advances in science and in technology oblige we human beings to set new questions about what being human means. Not only do we have to answer metaphysical questions about who we are, we must also ask ourselves who we want to be. As the possibility of using brain implants becomes increasingly nearer, competition and collaboration with artificial intelligence, the chances of extending life while ending many of the inconveniencies of old age, genetic editing, and the capacity to exist on other planets are all realities which require us to take a fresh and profound look at such issues.

Axiological concerns about humanity and its technical creations, as well as the hypothetical conceptual antagonism between the natural and the artificial, have accompanied western thought since at least ancient Greek times. Biology and technology force us to consider this matter in a more complex way, for example, to think about the relationship between humans and machines. Before Alan Turing (1954) conceived his famous test, which was theoretically capable of differentiating humans from computers, Descartes critically pointed out, in his celebrated Discourse on Method (1637), certain divergences between humans and machines, and made a first analytical attempt to differentiate between them.

More recently, the end of the 20th century saw the emergence of the concept of the extended mind (Clark & Chalmers, 1998). According to this thesis, some mental processes occur outside of the brain (and of the body) of the biological subject which triggers them. This view of the mental implies that cognitive processes would no longer be exclusive to living beings- in addition to being strongly conditioned by the natural, technological and social environment – to the extent that we should review the traditional separation between the mental and the physical.

Bearing in mind that current advances in various branches of technology may converge in the creation of new bridges between real and artificial life, we need to rethink the basic categories of understanding life, of humanity and of the most fundamental ethical and political issues: Are humans about to transcend their own humanity? Are we on Earth on the cusp of new evolutionary leap? Will the boundaries between the living and the artificial cease to exist? Can machines emulate and reproduce human consciousness and intelligence? Where are the political and ethical standpoints concerning these perspectives of transformation? Is it licit to do everything which at first sight seems doable? These questions still have no clear answers, which is precisely why they cannot be put off any longer.

Plenary Speakers

Prof. Javier Echeverría, PhD – Innology Lab Network (Spain)

Los disvalores del transhumanismo. Por la libertad de las tecnopersonas.

Javier Echeverría is member of the International Academy of Philosophy of Science and Vicepresident of Jakiunde (Basque Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters). Previously was Prof. of Logic and Philosophy of Science at the University of the Basque Country (1978-1995), Research Prof. at the Spanish Council of Scientific Research (CSIC, Department of Science, Technology and Society, Madrid 1995-2008) and Ikerbasque Research Professor at the University of the Basque Country (2008-2018). He has published over 100 articles in scientific journals and more than 200 in collective books. He is the author of 20 books, including Innovation and Values: a European Perspective (UNR/CBS 2014), Knowledge Communities (co-edited with Andoni Alonso and Pedro Oiarzabal, UNR/CBS Reno, 2011), Epistemology and the Social (co-edited with Evandro Agazzi and Amparo Gomez, Amsterdam, Rodopi, 2008) and La revolución tecnocientífica (Madrid: Fondo de Cultura Económica, 2003). He has recently published two books on Innovation Studies: El Arte de Innovar (Madrid: Plaza y Valdés, 2017) and Hidden innovation. Concepts, Sectors and Case Studies (San Sebastian, Sinnergiak Social Innovation, 2017, coeditor).

José Luis González Quirós

Prof. José Luis González Quirós, PhD – Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (Spain)

¿Tomarán decisiones las máquinas? ¿Serán infalibles los transhumanos?

Professor of Philosophy at the Rey Juan Carlos University (URJC). He has been a professor at the Complutense University of Madrid (UCM), a professor at the Institute, and a researcher at the Institute of Philosophy of the Higher Council for Scientific Research (CSIC). He is the author of a large number of books, including El porvenir de la razón en la era digitalMente y cerebroUna apología del patriotismo, El templo del saberTecnología y cultura, o el más reciente, La comprensión de la vida humana: historia, ciencia y libertad. He is also the author of hundreds of research and dissemination articles on issues of philosophy of mind, philosophy of technology, and political theory. He was a finalist of the national essay prize in 2003, obtaining in 2007 the Essay Prize of the Everis Foundation together with his disciple Karim Gherab Martín for his book Sobre el porvenir y la organización de la ciencia en el mundo digital that has been translated into English . He is the founder and first director of the magazine Cuadernos de pensamiento político, and has maintained a regular presence in the media and in the digital environment on topical issues in the field of culture, technology and politics.

Prof. Sara Lumbreras, PhD – Universidad Pontificia Comillas (Spain)

Three key concepts to understand transhumanism

Prof. Sara Lumbreras holds a Ph.D. in industrial engineering as is a professor at the ICAI School of Engineering (Comillas Pontifical University). She is an expert in the development and application of decision-making techniques in complex problems, particularly in the energy and financial sectors, having worked for five years in investment banking in London. She is a member of the Chair of Science, Technology and Religion at the same university, where she studies the social impact of technology. She is the author of more than thirty publications and has worked on more than a dozen projects with both private companies and public institutions. She has conducted research stays at prestigious institutions such as the Santa Fe Institute (USA), the New Mexico Consortium (USA) and the London Business School (United Kingdom). In addition, she is Global Shaper of the World Economic Forum and a Marshall Memorial Fellow.

Prof. Karim Gherab Martín, PhD – Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (Spain)

Transhumanism, Artificial Intelligence, Free Will

Karim Gherab Martín is a professor at the Faculty of Humanities of the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos. He holds a degree in Theoretical Physics and a PhD in Philosophy of Science and Technology. He has been a visiting professor at prestigious universities such as Harvard University (2008-2009), University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2010) and Paris-Diderot University in Paris (2013). He has been an associate professor at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid and at the Universidad del País Vasco, researcher at the CSIC (2011-2013), and has done consultancy work for Indra, Telefonica, Atos-Origin and Accenture. In 2005 he received the Everis Foundation Essay Prize for El templo del saber: Hacia la Biblioteca digital universal (2006, Ed. Deusto).

Prof. Ignacio Quintanilla, PhD – Universidad Complutense de Madrid (España)

Educarnos en el transhumanismo: ideas, principios y valores para nuevas formas de civilización y de barbarie.

Ignacio Quintanilla Navarro is an industrial psychologist and holds a doctorate in philosophy. He is a professor in the Department of Educational Studies of the Universidad Complutense in Madrid, Spain, and a specialist in the philosophy of technology. He has been researching the impact of technological change on the human condition for years. Among his publications are: Techné. La filosofía y el sentido de la Técnica (2012), Ortega y la Técnica (Co. ed.) (2015), Are human beings humean robots? (2017) and Discovering the Principle of Finality in Computational Machines (2018).

Highlighted Sessions

Gustavo Duperré

Alternativas y limitaciones del transhumanismo: reflexiones en torno al activismo cíborg, Human+ y el moderno Prometeo

Gustavo Norberto Duperré
Universidad del Salvador and Head Office of Culture and Education (Argentina)