Ethical Challenges of Emerging Technologies

IacobacciOct. 4, 2018, Nicoletta Iacobacci, Founder of and professor in the Media Communications Department, Webster Geneva Campus and Jinan University, China, presented the ethical challenges of new technologies at Webster Geneva Campus.

Talking at a Spotlight Seminar organized by the Media Communication Department, Iacobacci explored the ethical questions raised by these exponentially growing technologies ranging from artificial intelligence and the ability to “edit” our DNA to ectogenesis — the ability to grow a child outside the womb. She questions whether there are any limits to how far we are willing to go: to what extent can humans be replaced by machines?

Envisioning a future in which humans merge with machines, Iacobacci explained that at the heart of these challenges lies the difference between human beings and “being human.” Whilst it seems more acceptable for technology to mimic or assist with the basic functions of human beings, we may lose the beauty of being human if we seek to replicate those uniquely human characteristics of empathy, compassion, gratitude and forgiveness. The seminar was followed by a question and answer session with the audience and a networking cocktail. A livestream of the event is available.

The next Spotlight Seminar will be held on Dec. 6, 2018, in honor of International Human Rights Day on the theme Can social media change the world? promoting or demoting human rights. Iacobacci’s new book "Exponential Ethics" will be released later this month.

Iacobacci will be teaching on Webster Geneva’s new MA in Communication Management.