Director of the Future of Humanity Institute Oxford University

Nick Bostrom is a Swedish-born philosopher with a background in theoretical physics, computational neuroscience, logic, and artificial intelligence, as well as philosophy. He is a Professor at Oxford University, where he heads the Future of Humanity Institute as its founding director. Bostrom is the most-cited professional philosopher under the age of 50. He is the author of some 200 publications, including Anthropic Bias (2002), Global Catastrophic Risks (2008), Human Enhancement (2009), and Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies (2014), a New York Times bestseller which helped spark a global conversation about the future of AI. He has also published a series of influential papers, including ones that introduced the simulation argument (2003) and the concept of existential risk (2002).

His academic work has been translated into more than 30 languages. He is a repeat main TED speaker and has been interviewed more than 1,000 times by various media. He has been on Foreign Policy’s Top 100 Global Thinkers list twice and was included in Prospect’s World Thinkers list, the youngest person in the top 15. As a graduate student he dabbled in stand-up comedy on the London circuit, but he has since reconnected with the heavy gloom of his Swedish roots.

Nick Bostrom Lecture Topics

  • Sharing the World with Digital Minds
  • Strategic Implications of Openness in AI Development
  • The Reversal Test: Eliminating Status Quo Bias in Applied Ethics
  • The Vulnerable World Hypothesis
  • Existential Risk Prevention as Global Priority
  • How Unlikely is a Doomsday Catastrophe?
  • The Future of Humanity
  • Astronomical Waste: The Opportunity Cost of Delayed Technological Development
  • The Future of Human Evolution
  • Technological Revolutions: Ethics and Policy in the Dark

Nick Bostrom is Professor in the Faculty of Philosophy at Oxford University. He is the founding Director of the Future of Humanity Institute, a multidisciplinary research center which enables a few exceptional mathematicians, philosophers, and scientists to think carefully about global priorities and big questions for humanity.

Bostrom has a background in physics, computational neuroscience, and mathematical logic as well as philosophy.

He is best known for his work in five areas: (i) existential risk; (ii) the simulation argument; (iii) anthropics (developing the first mathematically explicit theory of observation selection effects); (iv) impacts of future technology; and (v) implications of consequentialism for global strategy.

He is recipient of a Eugene R. Gannon Award (one person selected annually worldwide from the fields of philosophy, mathematics, the arts and other humanities, and the natural sciences).

Nick Bostrom has been listed in Foreign Policy’s Top 100 Global Thinkers list and Prospect Magazine’s World Thinkers list (the highest-ranked analytic philosopher and the youngest person in the top 15 from all fields).