CIBS Conference: Welcome and Introduction

9. februar 2017

VINCENT F. HENDRICKS AND MADS VESTERGAARD   Center for Information and Bubble Studies, University of Copenhagen (Denmark)  Welcome
FLEMMING BESENBACHER Carlsberg Foundation (Denmark) Introduction 

Welcome to the first annual conference of The Center for Information and Bubble

Studies (CIBS) at The University of Copenhagen. CIBS was established in September 2015 by a generous grant from The Carlsberg Foundation to explore the structure and dynamics of bubbles in finance, politics, in science, on social media and in other - ever so often - bubble hospitable environments. In the press release following the news of CIBS, the chairman of the Carlsberg Foundation, Professor Flemming Besenbacher, explained: “The activities of CIBS stem from innovative interdisciplinary thinking about basic research in the humanities. The research activities promise practical impact and thus CIBS is a pivotal example of Scientific Social Responsibility.”

Besides continuously pushing the boundaries of knowledge, science should both address and play an active role in formulating the solutions to the grand challenges the world faces. In 2016, World Economic Forum added “misinformation” on the web as a global challenge.

Our conference, The Economics of Post-Factual Democracy and associated workshops, sit right at the center of this constellation of global challenges from misinformation to growing inequality. If these challenges are not met, the world will indeed become a more unstable place to be economically, politically, socially and culturally. Both the generations of the day and the generations to come deserve better. After all, every generation should have as the overarching ambition that the world they turn over to the next generation is in better shape than the one they took over from their parents. That’s called progress. Even counting setbacks, wars, revolutions, odd presidential elections and exits, fake news, alternative facts and distrust, progress has characterized humanity for as long as we have been humans some 250,000 years – let’s continue on this track.