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Durham University

St John's College


St John's hosts strategic world leading conference on robotics and artificial intelligence

(10 January 2017)

Last week the College's project funded by the Templeton World Charitable Foundation, 'Equipping Christian Leaders in an Age of Science' hosted over 40 senior church leaders, scientists and theologians exploring the theme of 'What does it mean to be human' in the light of advances in robotics, artificial intelligence and the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence.


These fast moving areas of technological and scientific advance pose challenges and opportunities for theology and philosophy. In particular the rise of robotics and AI was illustrated by such diverse areas ranging from driverless cars to sex with robots. Questions included what will be the profile of the workforce in the future and will AI ever become self-conscious.


The Principal who is one of the lead investigators on this project commented 'Never before have so many senior church leaders and thinkers gathered together to explore with cutting edge scientists these rapidly advancing areas which are going to dominate our culture in so many ways.'

Dr Lydia Reid documented the conference on social media here: and check out #CLAS

St John's College, Durham is a recognised College of Durham University and incorporates Cranmer Hall. Charity No. 1141701 Limited Company No. 113496 (England and Wales) VAT No. 334 6364 57.