Global Governance Institute


12: Daniel Schmachtenberger – Existential Risk and Phase Shifting to a New World System

Daniel Schmachtenberger joins us to discuss existential risk, exponential curves and why a phase shift to a new world system is inevitable.

Daniel Schmachtenberger
Daniel Schmachtenberger is a social philosopher and founding member of The Consilience Project, aimed at improving public sensemaking and dialogue. The through line of his interests has to do with ways of improving the health and development of individuals and society, with a virtuous relationship between the two as a goal. Towards these ends, he has a particular interest in the topics of catastrophic and existential risk, civilization and institutional decay and collapse as well as progress, collective action problems, social organization theories, and the relevant domains in philosophy and science. Motivated by the belief that advancing collective intelligence and capacity is foundational to the integrity of any civilization, and necessary to address the unique risks we currently face given the intersection of globalization and exponential technology, he has spoken publicly on many of these topics, hoping to popularize and deepen important conversations and engage more people in working towards their solutions. Many of these can be found on Daniel's website. In this conversation, we explore why it is now imperative to figure out a whole new world system given the catastrophic risk landscape that we confront. Daniel argues that in the face of exponential curves proliferating across systems – human, technological and geophysical – we need to develop a novel set of solutions for how we coordinate at scale. The task ahead of us is nothing less than to foster a global social, technological and educational zeitgeist, one which can prevent existential risk in a way commensurate to our deepest values for participatory and empowered governance.