ELO Oxford Program Highlights Consciousness, Creativity & Generative AI

Generative AI (‘GenAI’) forms the latest in a series of Artificial Intelligence breakthroughs that have rocked the world.

Each previous breakthrough has raised challenging questions about what it means to be human. The latest developments in GenAI, however, appear to challenge what is generally recognized as a core element of human nature; namely our creativity. In the past, human creativity has often been cited as what separates us from machines. But now, it seems there is no area of human creativity that is beyond reach for GenAI technology, be that creative writing, artwork, music, video, the creative aspects of science and engineering, or even our ability to converse with other people.

Dr. Nigel Crook, Professor of AI and Robotics & Associate Dean for Research and Knowledge Exchange, Oxford Brookes University, is an instructor in this year’s ELO Oxford Leadership Program. He will lead a session focusing on the theoretical, theological, and practical implications of these changes for business leaders. Dr. Crook will give a non-technical explanation of the underlying technologies that endow GenAI with these creative capacities and present a theologically framed case for the distinctive nature of human creativity.

Based in Oxford, UK, Nigel Crook is a professor and an associate dean at Oxford Brookes University. He graduated from Lancaster University with a BSc (Hons) in Computing and Philosophy in 1982. He has a PhD in explainable intelligent machines and more than 30 years of experience as a lecturer and a researcher in AI. He recently published a book entitled “Rise of the Moral Machine: Exploring Virtue Through a Robot’s Eyes”. He has been interviewed as an expert in AI and robotics on numerous international, national, and regional media channels including CNBC Squawk Box, BBC Breakfast, BBC World News, and BBC Radio 4. His research interests include biologically inspired machine learning, social robotics, autonomous moral machines, and ethical AI.

Dr. Nigel Crook’s book, Rise of the Moral Machine, describes the emergence of a new technology called "moral machines" that seeks to equip AI algorithms and robots with the capacity to perceive and respond to the ethical consequences of their choices and actions. His book describes the efforts of scientists who seek to rectify this by equipping AI algorithms and robots with the capacity to perceive and respond to the ethical consequences of their choices and actions. Dr. Crook brings a unique perspective on this subject that is informed by a deep understanding of AI technology combined with a long-term amateur interest in the theology of personal moral development.

Categories: Oxford, Speakers