AI Abstract Series Ep7: Long-Term Trajectories of Human Civilization

Welcome to the Technocracy A.I. Abstract Series for Published Scientific Work in the A.I. and Artificial General Intelligence field.

Today’s paper is titled: Long-Term Trajectories of Human Civilization

Authored By Seth D. Baum, Stuart Armstrong, Timoteus Ekenstedt, Olle Häggström, Robin Hanson, Karin Kuhlemann, Matthijs M. Maas, James D. Miller, Markus Salmela, Anders Sandberg, Kaj Sotala, Phil Torres, Alexey Turchin, and Roman V. Yampolskiy


Purpose: This paper formalizes long-term trajectories of human civilization as a
scientific and ethical field of study. The long-term trajectory of human civilization can be
defined as the path that human civilization takes during the entire future time period in
which human civilization could continue to exist.

Approach: We focus on four types of trajectories: status quo trajectories, in which
human civilization persists in a state broadly similar to its current state into the distant
future; catastrophe trajectories, in which one or more events cause significant harm to
human civilization; technological transformation trajectories, in which radical
technological breakthroughs put human civilization on a fundamentally different course;
and astronomical trajectories, in which human civilization expands beyond its home
planet and into the accessible portions of the cosmos.

Findings: Status quo trajectories appear unlikely to persist into the distant future,
especially in light of long-term astronomical processes. Several catastrophe,
technological transformation, and astronomical trajectories appear possible.
Value: Some current actions may be able to affect the long-term trajectory. Whether
these actions should be pursued depends on a mix of empirical and ethical factors. For
some ethical frameworks, these actions may be especially important to pursue.
Keywords: long-term trajectories, human civilization

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AI Abstract Series Ep7: Long-Term Trajectories of Human Civilization