Episode 323

Science & Survival

A Conversation with Martin Rees

June 22, 2023

Sam Harris speaks with Martin Rees about the importance of science and scientific institutions. They discuss the provisionality of science, the paradox of authority, genius, civilizational risks, pandemic preparedness, artificial intelligence, nuclear weapons, the far future, the Fermi problem, the  prospect of a "Great Filter", the multiverse, string theory, exoplanets, large telescopes, improving scientific institutions, wealth inequality, atheism, the conflict between science and religion, moral realism, and other topics.

Martin Rees is the UK's Astronomer Royal. He is based at Cambridge University where he is a Fellow (and Former Master) of Trinity College. He is a former President of the Royal Society and a member of many foreign academies. His research interests include space exploration, high-energy astrophysics, cosmology, and exobiology. He is co-founder of the Centre for the Study of Existential Risks at Cambridge University (CSER) and has served on many bodies connected with education, space research, arms control, and international collaboration in science. He is a member of the UK's House of Lords. In addition to his research publications, he has written many general articles and ten books including On the Future: Prospects for Humanity, The End of Astronauts, and If Science is to Save Us.

Twitter: @lordmartinrees

Website: www.martinrees.uk


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