By Freeman Dyson
«Il titolo Infinito in ogni direzione ha due significati. Allude alle illimitate possibilità dell’universo, che esso sviluppa prendendo coscienza di se stesso attraverso l’azione della vita e dell’intelligenza. Ma si riferisce anche alle enormi responsabilità dell’umanità come custode della vita su un piccolo pianeta.» Così Freeman J. Dyson definisce i punti di riferimento del suo discorso sulla scienza, che mette costantemente a confronto i risultati della ricerca più aggiornata in campo fisico, astronomico, biologico con gli interrogativi più stringenti dell’etica e della politica. Quali sono le strade che l. a. scienza contemporanea esplora nella sua indagine sulle origini della vita e sulla sua evoluzione? Quali i dilemmi cui portano i risultati della ricerca? Quali le scelte necessarie perché le raffinate tecnologie prodotte dal progresso scientifico vengano usate in step with il progresso dell’umanità e non consistent with l. a. sua distruzione? A questo intreccio di temi di appassionante attualità e di domande rivolte al futuro, Freeman Dyson porta il suo illuminante e inventivo contributo: una riflessione che lega l. a. scienza alla filosofia, il gusto della scoperta all’attenzione costante alle componenti spirituali del pensiero e della vita umana.
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Extra info for Infinito in ogni direzione Le origini della vita,la scienza e il futuro dell'umanità
A major problem in designing and carrying out national policy for science and technology in both developing and developed countries is to reconcile the programs of individual ministries with wider national concerns. This applies to manpower as well as other components of policy. A second characteristic of the central bodies is that they perform common functions: establishment of scientific and manpower priorities, financing the operation of research laboratories and utilities, identification of the need for and importance of highly trained manpower, provision of research and fellowship support to individuals, advocating the role of science and technology in the development process, and explaining to the public the importance of science and technology.
Such groups exist in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, 34 MANPOWER POLICIES Mexico, Peru, and Venezuela. In Africa, such groups exist, or have existed, in Egypt, Ethiopia, and Kenya. In Asia, Ministries of Science and Technology (South Korea) or a science component in the Ministry of Planning (India) are more prevalent. Often governmental structures are so fluid that it is difficult to know where various science-related functions are performed at the national level. Experience has brought to the fore some cautions relating to central bodies.
Long-term forecasts are now generally made only for broad occupational groups, and the longer the forecasts, the broader the occupational groups. This means that long-term forecasts are still of limited utility for educational planning, which by its nature must be medium- to long-term. The utility of short-term forecasts, frequently repeated, is more widely recognized as useful to provide information on immediate changes in the job situation. The relative effects of different assumptions are being measured and made a part of the forecasts.