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All agents, no matter their origin or composition, have one thing in common: an ability to pursue goals within some problem space. Dr. Levin’s lab employs concepts from cognitive and behavioral science to describe the activities of individual cells in development, regeneration, and cancer suppression. To unlock the latent potential of life to perform novel behaviors, Levin’s team devises scenarios that are unprecedented in evolutionary history. His talk explores the implication of these findings for regenerative medicine, cognitive science, and human flourishing.

“All intelligence is collective intelligence. We are all made of parts. And the research program is to understand how those parts come together to form something more than the sum of its parts,”

explains Dr. Michael Levin.

Dr. Michael Levin is the Vannevar Bush Distinguished Professor of Biology at Tufts University, an associate faculty at Harvard’s Wyss Institute, and the director of the Allen Discovery Center at Tufts. He has published over 400 peer-reviewed publications across developmental biology, computer science, and philosophy of mind. His group works to understand information processing and problem-solving across scales, in a range of naturally evolved, synthetically engineered, and hybrid living systems. Dr. Levin’s work spans from fundamental conceptual frameworks to applications in birth defects, regeneration, and cancer.

Dr. Levin is the Project Leader of the $2.1M project Synthetic Living Machines and the Emergence of Purpose. A recent guest on the Templeton Ideas podcast, he discussed common misconceptions of biology, building biological robots, and the potential of regenerative medicine to revolutionize human health.

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