In A. C. Grayling’s view three of the biggest challenges facing the world today are climate change, the rate of development in high-impact technologies, and the global deficit of social and economic justice. They are connected: the third of these underlies problems in dealing with the first two.
He asks: can human beings agree on a set of values that will allow us to confront the threats facing the planet, or will we simply continue with our disagreements and antipathies as we collectively approach greater problems and instability, and even our possible extinction?
Both our problems and our technologies are outstripping our moral and current political capacity to deal with them. As every day brings new stories about extreme weather events, spyware, lethal autonomous weapons systems, and international political-economic, health and human rights imbalances, Grayling argues that we urgently need to find a positive answer to the question ‘Is Global Agreement on Global Challenges Possible?’
A. C. Grayling CBE MA DPhil (Oxon) FRSA FRSL is the Founder and Principal of New College of the Humanities at Northeastern University, and its Professor of Philosophy. He is also a Supernumerary Fellow of St Anne’s College, Oxford. He is the author of over thirty books of philosophy, biography, history of ideas, and essays. He was for a number of years a columnist on the Guardian, the Times, and Prospect magazine. He has contributed to many leading newspapers in the UK, US and Australia, and to BBC radios 4, 3 and the World Service, for which he did the annual ‘Exchanges at the Frontier’ series; and he has often appeared on television. He has twice been a judge on the Booker Prize, in 2014 serving as the Chair of the judging panel. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, a Vice President of Humanists UK, Patron of the Defence Humanists, Honorary Associate of the Secular Society, and a Patron of Dignity in Dying.
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