By collaborating with others, humans can achieve goals that would be beyond the reach of a single person: No one can play a symphony, build a city, or land on the moon entirely on their own. This seminar will take a multidisciplinary view to understand how humans collaborate, including examining how the capacity to collaborate develops in childhood, when teams outperform individuals, what we can learn about human collaboration from multi-agent AI, and how we can apply insights from the social science of teamwork to make scientific collaborations smoother and fairer.
Scientists and humanists study "human nature" from radically different perspectives. This course explores interdisciplinary ways of tackling the gnarly problem of understanding ourselves. We'll grapple with questions like: Is human nature fundamentally good or evil? Is this even a sensible question to ask? How do technology and culture impact human morality and the ways we study it? What can AI tell us about human nature? Students will learn how to critically evaluate research examining the porous boundaries between self and society, and to think imaginatively about what the scientific method can reveal about humans- now and in the future.