Existential risk

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An existential risk or existential threat is a potential development that could drastically (or even totally) reduce the capabilities of humankind. According to the Global Challenges Foundation a typical person could be five times more likely to die in a mass extinction event compared to a car crash.[1]

List of risks

Warfare

Environmental

Technological

  • Errant AI or Posthuman revolution - triggering warfare, societal collapse, enslavement
  • Cyberattacks - triggering warfare or societal collapse
  • Exotic physics triggering destruction or environmental collapse
  • Nano pollution - triggering destruction or environmental collapse
  • Mutantocalypse - triggering 're-evolving' specimen into new semi-incomplete one (many from uncivilized into bizarre ones), severe societal collapse, damaging remaining uninfected specimen to years come

Social

  • Mega-autocractic / Neo-fascist dystopias - causing social and technological stagnation or regression
  • Massive social unrest - causing warfare or reactionary governments or
  • Mutantocalypse - triggering 're-evolving' specimen into new semi-incomplete one (many from uncivilized into bizarre ones), severe societal collapse, damaging remaining uninfected specimen to years come
  • 21st century soma - causing social and technological stagnation or regression

Exotic

Attitudes

Stances that can be adopted towards existential risks include:

  • Inevitabilism - the view that, for example, "the victory of transhumanism is inevitable"
  • Precautionary - emphasising the downsides of action in areas of relative ignorance
  • Proactionary - emphasising the dangers of inaction in areas of relative ignorance
  • Techno-optimism - the view that technological development is likely to find good solutions to all existential risks
  • Techno-progressive - the view that existential risks must be actively studied and managed[disputed]

See also

External links

References