The Future of Human Enhancement
As humans, we have been enhancing our abilities since we crafted our first tool. Human enhancement is happening all the time through incremental improvements on existing technologies. We are growing stronger, more skilled, and better equipped over time. With every new technology, there have been new objections and doubts. Societal norms have typically been the voice of reason when new human interventions were introduced. Before the scientific method, pathology, and other sciences, religion dictated societal norms and in turn ruled over most decision-making. By understanding popular oppositions to the evolution of human enhancement, we can take new perspectives on current, coming, and future human enhancements.
After researching, reporting on, and developing alternative possible futures for human enhancements using the 2x2 framework, 3 horizons framework, and causal layer analysis framework, we created a video and accompanying workshop to capture opposing narrative showing the dichotomy of the benefits and risks of human enhancement. The video provokes tension between the decision a to whether or not participants would want enhancements in the future. The workshop allowed participants to dive deeper into the discussion of where we saw human enhancements in our future. Keep the energy high and discussion light-hearted, we planned a short debates between designated teams with very specific “asks” for the team to create three main arguments within a time limitation, allowing all participants to contribute. Concluding the session, we facilitated a vote and small discussion to debrief on any revelations participants may have had through the presentation and how this discussion may affect their perception of human enhancements in their line of work.