Yuval Noah Harari is one of the world’s top bestselling author and he was a keynote speaker at BRAND MINDS 2019.
BRAND MINDS is The Central and European Business Summit taking place in Bucharest, Romania.
Prof. Harari is a #worldchanger supporting humanity’s leaders look around the corner and see the breakthrough changes coming our way.
One of World’s Top Historians
Yuval Noah Harari is a historian and a tenured professor in the Department of History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Prof. Harari received his PhD degree in medieval history and military history at Jesus College, Oxford. He is currently focussing on world history, macro-historical processes and humanity’s future.
Numerous International Awards
Yuval Noah Harari is a two-time winner of the Polonsky Prize for Creativity and Originality, in 2009 and 2012. In 2011 he won the Society for Military History’s Moncado Award for outstanding articles on military history. In 2017 his book Homo Deus won Handelsblatt’s German Economic Book Award for the most thoughtful and influential economic book of the year.
His books have been translated in 50 languages and sold in over 12 million copies around the globe
Prof. Harari has published seven books, of which the latest three have achieved international recognition and became best-sellers.
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind was published in 2014 and by 2017 eight million copies had been sold and the book was translated into nearly 50 languages. It was listed on the Sunday Times bestseller list for over six months in paperback and was a New York Times top 10 bestsellers.
Recommended by Barack Obama, Bill Gates & Mark Zuckerberg
Sapiens was recommended by Barack Obama, Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg.
In 2016, Prof Harari published his second book, Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow. Within less than two years, four million copies of the book had been sold worldwide and it was translated into nearly 50 languages. Homo Deus is a critically acclaimed book that examines the big future projects facing humanity in the 21st century.
After exploring deep into the past and then the future, Yuval Noah Harari published 21 Lessons for the 21st Century in 2018. Here he stopped to take the pulse of our current global climate, focusing on the biggest questions of the present moment: What are today’s greatest challenges and choices? What should we pay attention to?
Prof. Harari lectures around the world on the topics explored in his books and articles. Various prestigious magazines have taken interest in his work and published articles exploring his insights, such as The New York Times, The Guardian, The Economist, The New Yorker, Financial Times, Times Higher Education, The Wall Street Journal.
He was interviewed by Christiane Amanpour and was a conversation partner of Christiane Lagardere, Natalie Portman, Russell Brand.
He spoke at the 2018 World Economic Forum meeting raising questions about the future of mankind.
Here are some of Prof. Harari’s insights regarding the future of mankind.
The future of humans is becoming gods
History began when humans invented gods and will end when humans become gods.
Yuval Noah Harari, Sapiens
Prof. Harari envisions a not-so-distant future when humans are going to upgrade themselves into gods. By becoming gods he means humans “will acquire abilities that in the past were considered divine, such as eternal youth, mind reading, and the ability to engineer life.”
The god-like nature of future humans doesn’t seem so far-fetched if we keep in mind that researchers have been using CRISPR technology to edit out genetically inherited illnesses for the past ten years.
Life without death
A few serious scholars suggest that by 2050, some humans will become a-mortal (not immortal, because they could still die of some accident, but a-mortal, meaning that in the absence of fatal trauma their lives could be extended indefinitely).
Yuval Noah Harari, Sapiens
Is the prospect of a never-ending life possible for humans? The latest developments in bioengineering and nanotechnology bring a compelling argument in favour of this prospect. It’s not only possible, but it’s actually highly probable.
Prof. Harari says free will is fantasy.
For a long time we have believed we are in control of our minds and no one can manipulate us. But the digital era has proven us wrong: search engines, algorithms and AI learn everything about our behaviours online. This vast amount of data can be used to manipulate and influence us – see fake news, the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal, Google’s databases.
Prof. Harari predicts that digital algorithms will know details about ourselves even before we do.
He sees the authority already shifting from humans to the algorithm. We already trust Amazon to show us what to buy, or a music-based AI algorithm to show us what clothes to wear.
Humans can be hacked
Prof. Harari believes that in the future it will be possible for algorithms to hack humans.
He gives the following explanation:
To hack humans you need a lot of data (which Facebook and Google already have), a good understanding of what’s happening inside the body and the brain, and a lot of computing power to analyse the data and come up with insights.
What does Prof. Harari worry about?
His worst worry is related to technology and the place it is taking us to.
He believes we will change and upgrade before we can really understand the full capacity of homo sapiens.
We actually know so little about ourselves and it’s a very bad idea to start upgrading something which you don’t really understand.
Yuval Noah Harari
In our blog articles dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs improve their leadership skills, we have often written about the importance of looking beyond.
Prof. Harari helps the world’s leaders look beyond humanity’s horizon and see the rise of a different homo sapiens. This changed humanity means we will be facing spiritual, moral and ethical questions about AI, gene editing, re-engineering of the human body and mind and digital dictatorship.
Are you a #worldchanger?
Come to BRAND MINDS 2020!
Here are our first confirmed speakers; we will be announcing more speakers in the coming months so stay tuned!