The TPUK Dashboard provides a status report of the projects undertaken by the Transhumanist Party (UK) (referred to as simply "the Party" on this page).
The status report is current as of 21st February 2019.
The Party has relaunched its website transhumanistparty.org.uk using Webflow.
The website provides a "Join us" link that connects to a database backend provided by Nationbuilder.
Next steps with the website include:
- Enabling supporters to commence regular membership payments
- Addressing some cosmetic glitches (vertical scrollbars appearing in unexpected places)
The Party uses Mailchimp to create a newsletter and other email communications, currently at a rate of about one per week.
In addition to regular news updates, this mechanism can be used to issue press-release style comments by the Party.
Copies of newsletters are also available on the Party website.
Processes need to be developed for:
- Gathering input from members and supporters for inclusion in newsletters
- Quickly reviewing the material received
The Party has asked for assistance from supporters to review and potentially update elements of the Party brand, including logos, images, colour schemes, and taglines.
Incoming press and media inquiries are received by a team that decides the best response.
From the formation of the Party, members have been invited to take part in a Google Group discussion forum.
From January 2019, members and active supporters have been invited to join a Slack application, transhumanistuk.slack.com. The stated purpose of the Slack is to enable supporters of the Party to exchange news and views, and to progress plans. An invitation link has been publicised for the Slack: Link expires on 27 Feb 2019.
Supporters of the Party are also able to share ideas on a closed Facebook Group.
To facilitate discussion with greater structure, the Party is planning to trial usage of the Discourse forum.
Improving mental health
The first campaign announced by the Party, after the reboot, is to improve mental health:
A vital part of human flourishing is our mental health. Many factors contribute to mental well-being, including genetic and environmental factors.
Some writers suggest that psychedelics, used wisely, have the potential to significantly boost mental health. This applies both as a “cure” (helping people recover “normal” levels of psychological well-being) and as an “enhancement” (enabling people to reach levels of consciousness more profound than the ones normally encountered). However, the current legal framework puts many obstacles in the way of experimentation with psychedelics.
The renowned science and food writer Michael Pollan has recently called for a re-evaluation of legislation covering psychedelics, in his latest book “How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence”. (For a review of that book by David Wood, see here.)
Within the UK, key research into both the opportunities and risks of liberalising psychedelics has been carried out by Dr Robin Carhart-Harris of Imperial College and Professor David Nutt, also of Imperial.
What policies should the Party adopt in this area? That’s the mission for this team to work out.
Data and ideas to help craft this campaign are currently being assembled on the Party's Slack. More structured discussion will commence shortly on Discourse.
Improving democratic discussions
What processes should the Party follow, before deciding on policies and campaigns?
At the minimum, steps will include:
- Verify facts surrounding issue of interest and generate supporting documentation
- Propose a variety of initiatives, using ideas raised by Party members
- Verify the proposals are ethically/economically/technologically viable
- Check for alignment with the core principles of the Party
- Share with the membership via online tools for debate
- Verify facts surrounding the debate arguments
- Release as formal Party policy
In parallel with developing new policies and campaigns, there is a need to review the policies created by the Party in 2015, to assess whether any updates or revisions are needed. This discussion is taking place on the Party's Slack.