Founded in 1987, Foresight Institute supports the beneficial development of high-impact technology to make great futures more likely. In this spirit, Foresight Institute runs the Existential Hope project, which aims to bring together and create resources, projects and organizations to help onboard and coordinate a global community across future-positive organizations and projects.
The AI Policy Hub is housed at the AI Security Initiative at the University of California, Berkeley’s Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity (CLTC), and the University of California’s CITRIS Policy Lab at the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society and the Banatao Institute (CITRIS).
The UC Berkeley AI Policy Hub is training a new generation of AI policy talent to shape the future of artificial intelligence in the public interest. This prestigious fellowship program strengthens interdisciplinary research approaches to AI policy while expanding inclusion of diverse perspectives.
The Hub supports annual cohorts of graduate student researchers who conduct innovative research and make meaningful contributions to the AI policy landscape. Fellows receive faculty and staff mentorship, access to world-renowned experts and hands-on training sessions, connections with policymakers and other decision-makers, and opportunities to share their work at a public symposium.
Centre for the Study of Existential Risk (CSER) is an interdisciplinary research centre within the University of Cambridge that studies existential risks, develops collaborative strategies to reduce them, and fosters a global community of academics, technologists and policymakers working to safeguard humanity.
Support from the Future of Life Institute over the last year has, in particular, enabled CSER to fund a full five-year position for its next Director. Professor Matthew Connelly will serve as Director beginning July 2023. It wouldn't have been possible to recruit a Director, and of this caliber, without FLI's support.
The director's work will support research and impact across a range of activity. In 2022, this included:
- Publishing 24 publications, including in leading journals like Nature, Nature Sustainability and the Proceedings of the National Academies of Science. This includes widely-covered and agenda-setting papers on Climate Endgame: Exploring catastrophic climate change scenarios and Huge volcanic eruptions: time to prepare.
- Hosting a biannual Cambridge Conference on Catastrophic Risk, a fortnight programme of intensive engagement, a dozen academic visitors and several workshops. These grow and foster the academic community working on existential risks.
- Advising governments and international organisations on existential risks. This includes the UN Secretary-General, the UK, the EU, the US, WHO, BWC, OECD and more. This has covered general resilience and pandemic preparedness after the pandemic, nuclear risks of the Russian invasion, and AI/AGI finally arriving on the political agenda.
- Engaging the public in these crucial issues with extensive, worldwide media engagement.
Hollywood, Health & Society (HH&S) is a program of the University of Southern California Annenberg Norman Lear Center that provides the entertainment industry with accurate and up-to-date information for storylines on health, safety and security. HH&S recognizes the profound impact that entertainment has on audience knowledge and behavior.
FLI made a grant to HH&S to support their work on educating on i) the risks of nuclear weapons, ii) the risks of irresponsible uses of AI, such as autonomous weapons, and to iii) encourage the development of positive visions of the future with responsible AI development.
FLI was also a partner in launching the BlueSky Screenwriting Competition, which invited screenwriters to submit pilot scripts set in a positive future that included themes of racial equity, climate change mitigation or adaptation, advancements toward peace, and incorporating the beneficial use of AI.
Earth is in the midst of a sixth mass extinction with species being lost at an increasingly catastrophic rate. Although Indigenous Peoples inhabit approximately 20 percent of the world’s land surface, Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities protect ~80% of our remaining biodiversity. This fact points to one of the key root causes of biodiversity loss as well as a solution.
Wise Ancestors is focused on conserving biodiversity through genomic sequencing and biobanking projects that center Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities as project co-developers, respect Indigenous rights and local interests, and lead to fair and equitable benefit sharing that includes returning land stewardship to Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities.
Wise Ancestors’ focus is on endangered and culturally relevant species, striving to effectively combine Western science with Indigenous science, knowledges and practices using a novel DeSci-based, blockchain-powered platform. With financial support from the Future of Life Institute, this work will help ensure we are Wise Ancestors for generations to come.