Skip to main content

Dr Ismael Al-Amoudi will give a presentation during the IBS research seminar series on 16th May

Ismael AL mtime20180511122518
Event information
Date 15 May 2018
Time 12:00-13:30 (Timezone: Europe/London)

Dr Ismael Al-Amoudi of the Cardiff University is giving a seminar presentation during the International Business and Strategy lunchtime seminar series on 16th May, at 13.00-14.30 in room 108, Henley Business School.

Presentation title:

Before and Beyond the Matrix: the organisations and institutions of Late Modernity


I will talk about the Center for Social Ontology's (CSO) forthcoming trilogy on posthuman society. The CSO is a collective of 10 writers across a rather broad range of social sciences: sociology and social theory but also international relations, media studies, philosophy of economics and management studies. Our new project leads us to write a trilogy which investigates, from a broadly realist perspective, the place, and challenges, of the human in contemporary social orders. Our project is broadly organised around three sets of questions, each set central to one of the volumes. In the first volume (Ex Machina: Realist responses to posthuman society, Cf. introduction attached) we asked what is specific about humanity’s nature and worth, and what are their main challenges in contemporary societies? In the second volume we ask what are the meso-level institutions and organisations that play a significant role in fostering, transforming or degrading our common humanity? In the third volume we shall ask, with due caution, what are the possible futures of humanity in morphogenic societies?

This second volume is based on the principle assumption that AI does not develop in an institutional or an organisational void. Rather, AI's development is the fruit of powerful organisations that invest massive resources. The specific meso-level configurations through which AI develops bear in a number of ways: they sideline ethical questions of fairness and dignity, they privilege lucrative applications, they assume a rather limited conception of 'intelligence', they invest in post-human enhancement, and so on. As some of you may guess, our provisional title's allusion to the Matrix refers less to the Wachowskis' movie than to Gibson's Matrix trilogy (of which the eponymous movie is but an edulcorated remake).