MAD World: Global Security Studies and the "End of the World"

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Monday, March 19th, 2018

Monday, March 19, 20183:00PM - 5:00PM108N, North House, Munk School of Global Affairs
1 Devonshire Place
M5S 3K7
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Description: International Relations (IR) has lagged behind popular imagination — and other academic disciplines — in thinking about possible dystopian futures and the prospect of the “end of the world” as a result of human-driven existential threats (or “global catastrophic risks”), ranging from nuclear war and climate change, to pandemics and artificial intelligence. The purpose of this talk is to articulate the pressing need for IR to reformulate “Global Security Studies” in order to problematize existential threats that could bring about the “end of the world”, whether it is understood as the survivability of modern civilization, the human species, or the planet at large. This talk aims to discuss (i) the nature and scope of human-driven existential threats; (ii) the potential contribution of Global Security Studies to the growing and interdisciplinary study of existential threats; and (iii) the meaning of existential threats for the International Relations discipline.

Speaker Bio: Nathan Alexander Sears is a PhD Student in Political Science at The University of Toronto, and Trudeau Centre Fellow in Peace, Conflict and Justice. He was previously a Professor of International Relations as the Universidad de Las Américas in Ecuador. His research primarily focuses on topics of International Relations Theory, International Security, and World History.


Kevin Rowley


Nathan Alexander Sears
PhD Student in Political Science, University of Toronto Trudeau Centre Fellow in Peace, Conflict and Justice, Munk School of Global Affairs

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