Disputatio Week 2015

//Disputatio Week 2015
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Natural vs. Artificial Intelligence. Barcelona, 9–11 December


The Barcelona Knowledge Hub of the Academia Europaea announces the  organisation of its 3rd modern-day Disputatio of Barcelona, which will be held on 9–11 December, 2015.


The Disputatio of Barcelona will take place within the framework of the Disputatio Week of 2015, which will include different scientific and social activities. This year’s topic will be Natural vs. Artificial Intelligence.

The schedule for the Disputatio Week 2015 is the following:

December 9, 2015 (Wednesday)


At the Royal Chapel of St. Agatha, Gothic Quartier

18.00 – 19.30   Disputatio of Barcelona 2015: Natural vs. Artificial Intelligence

Speakers: Núria Sebastián, UPF (“Human intelligence: Language to begin with”), and Ulises Cortés, UPC (“Artificial Intelligence: What’s in a name?”)

20.00 – 21.30   Concert of Lidia Pujol: “Around the music and concepts of Ramon Llull (1232-1316).”

December 11, 2015 (Friday)


Academia Europaea InterSection Workshop

The panoptic vision of the world: The influence of technology and humanities on society

Location: the Institute for Catalan Studies.

FIRST SESSION: IEC (c/ Carme 47, 08001 Barcelona)

08.30 – 09.00 Documents delivery

09.00 – 09.15  Welcome address

09.15 – 10.15   In remembrance of José Mariano Gago (1948-2015)

Convenor & Presentation: Rosalia Vargas, president of Ciência Viva (Agência Nacional para a Cultura Científica e Tecnológica), Portugal

Participants: Rosalia Vargas, Lisbon; Enric Banda, MAE, Barcelona; Ricard Guerrero, MAE, Barcelona

10.15  Convenor & Presentation: Genoveva Martí  MAE. ICREA Research Professor, Dept. of Logic, History and Philosophy of Science, University of Barcelona                             10.15 – 11.00  Inaugural Lecture: Challenges of knowledge integration: An International Dialogue Project. Anne Buttimer MAE. Emeritus Professor of Geography, University College of Dublin, Ireland

11.00 – 11.30  COFFEE BREAK

11.30 – 12.00 Three codes for life: Biology, language and information. Amadeu Viana Professor of Linguistics, Dept. of Catalan Philology, University of Lleida

12.00 – 12.30 Information geography: Hybridizing engineering and the social sciences? Maria Paradiso MAE. Professor of Geography and Planning, Dept. of Social Sciences, University of Sannio, Benevento, Italy

12.30 – 13.00  Mens and intelligentia in the Roman World. Marc Mayer, MAE & Víctor González Galera Dept. of Latin Philology, University of Barcelona

13.00 – 15.00  LUNCH BREAK


15.00   Convenor & Presentation: Maria Paradiso University of Sannio, Italy

15.00 – 15.30  Smart cities or smart citizens: Which is the future? Naba Barkakati Chief Technologist at the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), Washington DC, USA

15.30 – 16.00  From capitalism to neoliberalism: Two scientific effects on humans? Xavier Maymó CEO, FIMARGE, Andorra la Vella

16.00 – 16.45  Closing Lecture: An uncertain victory: The sociological intelligence. Salvador Giner MAE. Emeritus Professor of Sociology, University of Barcelona

16.45 – 17.00   Conclusions and Perspectives

17.30  Departure by bus for the Super Computing Centre, “Mare Nostrum”,  C/ Jordi Girona, 29 (Pedralbes), UPC

[Go and back by bus. Attendance is free, but previous registration is necessary.] 

THIRD SESSION: The Super Computing Centre of Barcelona, “Mare Nostrum” (Pedralbes Campus, UPC)

18:00 – 19.30 Convenor: Ulises Cortés Dept. of Computer Science, UPC & BSC “Mare Nostrum”

Presentation by Alexander Fidora, YAE, ICREA, UAB: “Ramon Llull, proto-European, and proto-founder of computational sciences”

Visit to the Centre

Disputatio of Barcelona 2015 (December 9-11)

About the Barcelona Knowledge Hub

The Barcelona Knowledge Hub (BKH) is operational since 2013. It is the Academia Europaea’s office for the Mediterranean and Southern European region. The BKH focuses on the promotion of activities of interest for the members of the Academia and the scientific community of the region, with special emphasis on multidisciplinary scientific activities that include the perspective of the natural sciences, social sciences and the humanities. The BKH’s goal is to contribute to the consolidation of a genuine European area of innovation, research, and education, especially in the Mediterranean and Southern Europe.

The BKH is supported by three local partners: the Government of Catalonia, represented by the Ministry of Economy and Knowledge, through the Secretariat of Universities and Research, the City Council of Barcelona, and the “La Caixa” Foundation. The hub counts on the collaboration of the Institute for Catalan Studies, in whose premises the hub’s office is located. The current Academic Director is Prof. Ricard Guerrero, Professor Emeritus of the University of Barcelona and Adjunct Professor of the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, and Member of the Organismic & Evolutionary Biology Section of the Academia Europaea. 

About the Disputationes

In the scholastic system of education of the Middle Ages, the Disputationes offered a formalized method of debate designed to uncover and establish truths in theology and in sciences. Fixed rules governed the process: they demanded dependence on traditional written authorities and the thorough understanding of each argument on each side. The famous Disputatio of Barcelona, called in the summer of 1263 by King James I of Aragon, was the most important and well-known of the inter-faith Disputationes that took place between Christian and Jewish theologians in the late Middle Ages. In 1263, the disputants were Friar Paulus Christianus (Dominican, and a convert rabbi from Judaism) and rabbi Moses ben Nachman (also known as Nachmanides), from the Girona’s community, the most important scholar of Judaism in his time. They discussed about theological questions in front of the king and his court, in the presence of the most important men of the prosperous and influent city of Barcelona.

The Disputatio of Barcelona in 2013 and 2014

The modern Disputatio of Barcelona have been successfully recovered. In November 2013, the BKH celebrated its inaugural event by commemorating the 750th anniversary of the medieval Disputatio, and organised a modern-day Disputatio on “Social and state-of-the-art Medicine”, featuring philosopher Thomas Pogge (Yale University; he being the leader of the Health Impact Fund) and neuroscientist Mara Dierssen (Centre for Genomic Regulation, UPF, Barcelona; she being the president of the Spanish Society for Neuroscience).

After the success of the Disputatio of Barcelona 2013, the Barcelona Knowledge Hub of the Academia Europaea organised in November 2014, together with the United Nations University Institute on Globalization, Culture and Mobility (UNU-GCM), a second modern-day Disputatio of Barcelona, on the topic “The Mediterranean, bridge of cultures”. Two MAE, Maria Paradiso, geographer, Professor of Geography and Planning at the University of Sannio, Italy, and Enric Banda, geophysicist, Director of Science and Environment at the “la Caixa” Foundation, Barcelona, presented two views of the topic, covering many different aspects of the Mediterranean history, culture, opportunities and present difficulties. This Disputatio of Barcelona 2014, was also a success as the first one. We can consider that the modern-day Disputationes are a distinctive feature of the BKH, and must be continued in future years. The Disputatio of Barcelona 2014 was held on the 27th of November at the Saint Pau Historic Site, Barcelona, where the UNU-GCM is located.


More information

Barcelona Knowledge Hub: http://barcelona.acadeuro.org  barcelona@acadeuro.org

Disputatio: http://www.barcelonadisputatio.com

Academia Europaea: http://acadeuro.org; http://ae-info.org


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