Cybernetics is an important tool for navigating major societal transformations, through capability-building, policy development and safe, sustainable and responsible approaches to complex systems. The theory of cybernetics first found form in the 1940s and 1950s, in response to the rapid growth of computing technology. It was a generative intellectual wellspring, helping shape everything from AI to systems theory, computer-driven music, the internet, neuroscience and design thinking. Today, there is an imperative to reappraise and refit cybernetics for the 21st century and to create, drive and sustain a program of activities around a new cybernetics. At the Australian National University we are leading this work.

Cybernetics Snacks is a speaker series of virtual bite-sized talks with leading voices in the cybernetics conversation, convened by the School of Cybernetics at ANU. In the 30-minute public conversation, we will invite all speakers to respond to the same four questions. In the spirit of the Ratio Club, our PhD students will then have the opportunity for an off-the-record conversation with the speaker.

The theme for Semester 2, 2022, is “The past, present and future of cybernetics”. Check out the menu of talks here.

Join us on Zoom! To join from the app, select ‘Join meeting’ then enter: Meeting ID 818 1769 9610 / Password 450953. To join in your browser, use this link.

Semester 2, 2022 | “The past, present and future of cybernetics”#

Looking for more? Watch the talks and download the take-home snack packs here!

29 July: An introduction to Cybernetics Snacks#

29 July: Genevieve Bell#

29 July: Bill Reckmeyer#

12 August: Kate Hayles#

  • Snack Pack
  • Recording (it’s in the oven… come back soon!)

26 August: Michael Arbib, UCSD/UCS#

  • Snack Pack
  • Recording (it’s in the oven… come back soon!)

23 September: Matthew Holt#

  • Snack Pack
  • Recording (it’s in the oven… come back soon!)

11 October: Catherine Mason#

  • Snack Pack
  • Recording (it’s in the oven… come back soon!)

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The Australian National University acknowledges, celebrates and pays our respects to the Ngunnawal and Ngambri people of the Canberra region and to all First Nations Australians on whose traditional lands we meet and work, and whose cultures are among the oldest continuing cultures in human history.

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