2015 Plenary 7: Hi-Tech, Bio-Tech: Unleashing Known Unknowns

The panel and audience pursued a vigorous – and occasionally pointed – debate on the promise and the risks of military innovation. The discussion focused primarily on the issue of autonomous weapons systems and biotechnology. Specifically, panellists examined whether the responsibility for ethical use belongs to the scientists and innovators endowing these weapons with greater intelligence, or to those executing these advanced capabilities in the field. Experts from the military, watchdog, and political realms offered differing views, ultimately agreeing that the element of human decision-making must be safeguarded above all.