Knowledge, Technology, and Social Systems

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Technologies, scientific transformations, and new areas of knowledge are continuously, and rapidly, being in- troduced. These developments are transforming social systems around the world. We have seen networked computers rapidly converging with telephones and TV into globally pervasive digital communications systems. These systems—and the emerging New Media they create—are increasingly impacting what and how we communicate with each other, as well as how we write history and interact among ourselves. The opportunities and threats these and other systems pose to personal and global quality of life, end even to human survival, are very real and relatively little understood. This seminar will consider these aspects, as well as alternative social systems that may lead to a better future for humankind. This seminar was formerly called Computers, Man, and Society.

Professor Jerry Spivack

Professor Sidney Greenfield

Professor Takeshi Utsumi


Meeting dates and locations are subject to change. Please confirm details with the seminar rapporteur.




10/19/2016 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: A KTSS Perspective
François Fortier, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs

11/09/2016 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
What You Can Do Online but Not On Campus: Innovations in Digital Education
Robert Ubell, New York University Tandon School of Engineering

12/14/2016 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
Biological Art: The Intersection of Science, Religion, and Modern Oblivion
Diana Moore, Biopharmaceutical Professional, Art Gallery Curator, and Bioartist

02/08/2017 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
Cybersecurity: How it Impacts our World and our Selves
Chris O’Brien, Cybersecurity Advocate and Founder of NetSafe Family

03/08/2017 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
Politics and the Future: Where We Have Been and Where We Are Heading
Open Discussion Among Members,

04/12/2017 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
A Living Tapestry: 8100 Days at the UN and Counting
Richard Jordan, UN Chairman of the 60th DPI/NGO Conference

05/10/2017 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
Simulation and its Goals: Perception, Purpose, Possibilities, Preparation and Performance
Priscilla Elfrey, National Center for Simulation,