On March 23rd, 2024, Prof. Fr. Michael Baggot, LC, Research Scholar of the Chair and Professor of the Faculty of Bioethics, was one of the keynote speakers at a day conference organised by the Edinburgh chapter of the Thomistic Institute and the Albertus Institute titled “Evolution and Theism” which was held at New College of the University of Edinburgh.

Prof. Fr. Baggot presented a paper titled “Beyond Natural Selection: The Human-Driven Future of Technological Evolution”. He began his talk by presenting the various aspects of the contemporary transhumanist movement which provided participants with a comprehensive view of the subject, where he went on to highlight some of its philosophical limitations. Drawing on Thomistic thought, Prof. Fr. Baggot then emphasised the importance of virtue in discerning how to properly take advantage of the positive elements of emerging technologies and its capacity in improving our lives. Finally, he concluded his presentation by urging for a recovery of “Catholic transhumanism” which aims for a “qualitative elevation rather than a mere quantitative extension of this life”.