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Christof Koch Nominated as Keynote Speaker for TEDxRAINIER 2013

November 5, 2013 | Download PDF

Christof Koch, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of the Allen Institute for Brain Science, has been selected as a speaker for TEDxRainier 2013, an independently organized TED event, which gathers thinkers, entrepreneurs, academics, artists, environmentalists and engaged citizens working to design better futures. His presentation will take place on November 9, 2013 at the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle, Washington.

Dr. Koch's speech titled, "A Universe of Consciousness," will discuss Panpsychism, a philosophy that has its origin with Plato and other Western thinkers. According to Dr. Koch, any organized matter has conscious experience. A suitably formulated form of Panpsychism can be expressed in the idiom of information theory, is quantifiable and empirically testable. The talk will discuss the relevant neuroscience and showcase some of the consequences for our view of non-human animals and the Internet, the most complex human artifact to date.

Dr. Koch has dedicated his life to researching neuroscience, having spent 25 years at the California Institute of Technology as a Professor in Biology and Engineering. In 2011, Dr. Koch left academia to join the Allen Institute for Brain Science, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to creating resources to fuel discovery among researchers worldwide and to advance the scientific community's understanding of the brain in health and disease. He is leading a 10-year, large-scale, high through-put effort to build brain observatories to map, analyze, and understand the cerebral cortex. Dr. Koch has authored more than 300 scientific papers and articles, eight patents, and five books concerned with the way neurons process information and the neuronal and computational basis of visual perception, selective attention, and consciousness. Together with his long-time collaborator, the late Francis Crick, Dr. Koch pioneered the scientific study of consciousness. His latest book is Consciousness—Confessions of a Romantic Reductionist.

TEDxRainier was envisioned by Nassim Assefi (Curator of TEDxRainier 2010 and TED Fellow) and Phil Klein, (Curator for TEDxRainier 2012, 2011 and co-organizer in 2010) who met at TEDGlobal 2009. TEDxRainier was formed to share the vision and experience of TED with Seattle, and to showcase some of the incredible talent we have in our community. This is a collaborative project staffed by many volunteers, including advisors, interns, partner organizations, and local TEDsters.