Call: Minds, Selves and 21st Century Technology – Workshop in Lisbon

Call for Papers: Minds, Selves and 21st Century Technology in Lisbon
Featuring the work of Susan Schneider

Abstracts are invited on the themes of Minds, Selves and 21st Century Technology


  • 1st CFP: 23rd February 2016
  • Submission by: 23rd March 2016
  • Acceptance decisions: End of March.
  • Conference Dates: 23rd & 24th of June.

Featured Speaker: Susan Schneider
Confirmed Guest Speakers: Brian McLaughlin, Gerald Vision, Gualtiero Piccinini, Keith Frankish

This workshop seeks to explore a deepening engagement between philosophy of mind, metaphysics and futuristic and emerging technologies such as superintelligence, AGI, machine consciousness and radical cognitive enhancements, such as brain chips and uploading.

Futuristic brain enhancements and AI are widely commented on, but without general appreciation of the philosophical implications. For example, are radical cognitive enhancements even compatible with survival, according to various theories of personal identity? Or, is the notion that the mind is a program, which often guides public and philosophical discussions, metaphysically well-founded?

We have a tendency to see the mind in terms of whatever is the latest technology. The computational model of mind has certainly been one of the most influential and is currently undergoing important challenges and challenging reinventions (e.g., Schneider, 2011). Whether or not you think our minds are actually computational, our abilities to interface with machines from virtual reality technologies such as Oculus Rift, to our more everyday use of smart-phones and wearable gadgetry, is undergoing a profound shift. We seek to motivate the serious philosophical analysis of these changes and assess their implications.

The cognitive environment of human beings is increasingly saturated with ‘smart’ artefacts. The ubiquitous and mobile internet amounts to a radically new epistemic and cognitive environment which we already inhabit (Clowes, 2015). The effects of technology may be rapidly reshaping the human cognitive profile. Some see this latest trend as deeply worrying (Carr, 2010; Turkle, 2011). Others see the relationship as a more a continuum with our cognitive evolution (Clark, 2003).

This meetings aims to analyse these developments and ask what are their significance for philosophical thought about mind, identity and human futures.

Abstracts of up to 1000 words are invited on, but is not limited to, the following topics:

  • The intersections of the philosophy of mind, applied ethics, philosophy of technology, & cognitive science.
  • Cognitive enhancement, cognitive diminishment, e.g., drugs, implants, wearable & ambient technologies, and how to value these.
  • Artificial Consciousness (Is it possible? How to detect it? Ethical Concerns?)
  • Artificial Intelligence (e.g., the safe development of AGI and superintelligence).
  • Is computationalism still the best framework to think about these issues?
  • The effects of technology on human Agency (extended agency through extended mind, ethics and metaphysics of cognitive enhancement.
  • Web, Internet and Cloud technologies, big data and their cognitive, epistemic and ethical implications.
  • The extended mind, the embodied mind, the hybrid mind & the situated mind.
  • Virtuality as model of self, mind and mind extension.

Submissions may be made via easychair:

Conference registration will be 75 Euros which will include tea, coffee and conference dinner.

We intend to produce a collected volume or journal special issue based upon contributions to the conference.

For further information see or contact

Programme Committee:

Danil Razeev, St. Petersburg State University, Department of Philosophy
Dina Mendonça, IFILNOVA, FCSH, New University of Lisbon
Klaus Gaertner, CFCUL, University of Lisbon
Inês Hipolito, University of Lisbon
João Fonseca, IFILNOVA, FCSH, New University of Lisbon
Jorge Gonçalves, IFILNOVA, FCSH, New University of Lisbon
Marek McGann, University of Limerick, Dept. of Psychology, MIC, Ireland
Maria Sekatskaya, St. Petersburg State University, Department of Philosophy
Marcin Milkowski, Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences
Mike Beaton, University of the Basque Country.
Paul Smart, Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering, University of Southampton
Richard Heersmink, Department of Philosophy, Macquarie University, Sydney
Ron Chrisley, COGS, Department of Information, University of Sussex
Robert Clowes, IFILNOVA, FCSH, New University of Lisbon
Sofia Minguens, MLAG, University of Porto
Tadeus Zawidzki, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences

Organising Committee: Robert W. Clowes, Klaus Gaertner & Inês Hipolíto

A meeting sponsored by the Mind & Cognition Group (Part of the ARGLAB at IFILNOVA), New University of Lisbon.


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