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Thalesians Seminar (London) — Abbas Edalat — Algorithmic Human Development

Abbas Edalat

Abbas Edalat

Date and Time

Wednesday, July 17, 2019, at 6:30 p.m.


Marriott Hotel, Canary Wharf London, UK

You can register for this event and pay online on


In the face of the seemingly intractable existential problems and challenges the human race currently encounters, we actually need to systematically develop protocols to enhance emotional and social intelligence and creativity in the human individual. These non-invasive protocols would be based on neuroplasticity and long term potentiation, and aim at neural retraining for optimal redevelopment and affect self-regulation in the individual regarded as a biological cybernetic system.

In simple terms, to solve our existential problems, it is time to think about protocols for human development rather than just focus on AI and making machines more computationally intelligent. Algorithmic Human Development seeks to aid individual human beings to trade their instinctual or learned traits of destructive aggression for individual and social creativity. Inspired partly by John Bowlby's Attachment Theory and supported by several computational models, our Self-Attachment protocol has parallels with Machine Learning as it employs the three basic paradigms of "substitution", "iteration" and "prior updating" in the human individual.

Edalat will give the results of a long-term pilot project on the subject and describe two Bayesian brain models for Self-Attachment: one based on Hebbian artificial neural networks and one on the Free Energy Principle. He will then describe a laughter protocol which directly counters old and entrenched beliefs of the Bayesian brain about past misfortunes and tragedies. It is designed to reduce negative emotions and boost positive affects and creativity.

Last but not least, Edalat will also finally explain how, during his detention and confinement for eight months last year, he was able to successfully extend the domain of this laughter protocol to "existing conditions" and turn a very difficult situation into a highly productive opportunity.


Professor Abbas Edalat did his PhD in Dynamical Systems at University of Warwick supervised by Christopher Zeeman. He first took up a lectureship in Mathematics at Sharif University of Technology in Tehran and then joined the Computing Department at Imperial College London where he has been a professor of Computer Science and Mathematics since 1997.

In the past 25 years, he has developed connections between Domain Theory; a mathematical and logical theory of programming languages, with several areas of Mathematical Computation including Exact Computation, Computational Geometry, Measure and Integration Theory, Differential Calculus, Solution of ODE's, Hybrid Systems and Optimisation. Edalat has also been a Social and Political activist and researcher.

In early, 2000's he formulated the Mongol Trauma hypothesis to explain the relative demise of Islamic Societies in the Middle East as aconsequence of the enduring trans-generation of trauma caused by the Mongol invasions of the region in the 1200's. It was partly in response to this hypothesis that in 2010 he started to work on Algorithmic Human Development.