Minds on Mars

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The Royal Society Of Edinburgh

22-26 George Street



United Kingdom

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Mars rovers need minds of their own. How do their minds resemble or differ from ours?

About this event

Our brains have evolved over millions of years to create versions of reality that they use to make decisions for action. The Mars Rover does the same thing as it explores its remote, barren and hostile world far from Earth’s control. We will bring some items to illustrate these points and discuss with the audience the similarities and differences between the minds of humans and Mars Rovers. We will debate questions that might range from the biology and technology of natural and artificial intelligence to the philosophical, ethical and legal implications of our expanding understanding of evolved and manufactured minds.

Group discussion:

Grab a cuppa and engage with experts in a friendly, relaxed environment. There won't be any PowerPoints, notes or formality here - just the chance to ask questions and listen to some of Scotland's leading thinkers and practitioners on various subjects.

To encourage discussion and allow everyone an opportunity to ask questions, we have limited the number of spaces available.

To participate in a Group Discussion you MUST be aged 16+


Sarah Quinn, RSE Fellowship Officer


David Price, Professor of Developmental Neurobiology, University of Edinburgh

XinRan Liu, STFC Research Fellow, University of Edinburgh

Calling all curious minds

The RSE invites you to Curious, its summer events programme running from 1 - 14 August. Take part in a series of free, online, and in-person talks, group discussions and outdoor activities on key contemporary topics and ground-breaking ideas with some of Scotland’s leading thinkers.

  • Health and wellbeing; covering mental and physical health, while examining broader wellbeing matters.
  • Innovation and invention; from the inventions which created the modern world to the innovation that drives our path forward
  • Our planet; including climate change, biodiversity, conservation, and ecology.
  • Year of Stories; stories, whether spoken, written, sung, or filmed, give a sense of place, history or belonging. In recognition of Scotland’s Year of Stories 2022.

You can view the full line-up at www.rse-curious.com

Important points to note

  • This event is suitable for age 16+
  • Accessibility statement: We aim to make events as accessible as possible. If you have any accessibility requirements or any questions about how we can support this event, please contact the RSE Public Engagement team on public_engagement@theRSE.org.uk
  • Covid-19: In order to prevent the spread of Covid-19 we kindly encourage participants to continue to wear face masks if they feel comfortable to do so; use the hand sanitisers provided at the venue; and to stay at home if they have Covid symptoms or have tested positive for Covid-19.
  • FILMING / PHOTOGRAPHY MAY TAKE PLACE AT THIS EVENT. Please notify RSE staff if you would prefer NOT to appear in any videos / photographs.

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