The project was part of a larger investigation of the merits and implications of transhumanism. It was funded by the Metanexus Institute and administered by Arizona State University (ASU). In addition, significant amounts of Templeton Foundation money supported the development of two lecture series that were highly critical of transhumanism, followed by an ASU two-day workshop in April 2008. The Global Spiral special issue was largely based on this workshop.
Regrettably, no self-described transhumanists or thinkers otherwise associated with the futurist movement were flown to Arizona at any stage, or otherwise invited to take part. Subsequently, the events were very much a matter of intellectuals largely hostile to the transhumanist movement coming together to examine it from the outside.
This oversight (if that's what it can be called) has recently been rectified (to a certain degree). A number of leading transhumanist thinkers were invited to contribute to a special Global Spiral issue which the transhumanists have been allowed to answer their critics.
The special edition looks like this:
- Nick Bostrom: “In Defense of Posthuman Dignity”
- Max More: “True Transhumanism”
- Aubrey de Grey: Aubrey de Grey’s Declaration
- Natasha Vita-More: Bringing Arts/Sciences and Design Into the Discussion of Transhumanism
- Russell Blackford: Trite Truths About Technology: A Reply to Ted Peters
Sky Marsen: Conceptualizing Future Identities
- Michael LaTorra Transhumanism: Threat or Menace? A Response to Andrew Pickering
- Mark Walker: Ship of Fools: Why Transhumanism is the Best Bet to Prevent the Extinction of Civilization
- Amara Graps: Reproductive Choices: The Promising Landscape of Assisted Reproductive Technology
- Martine Rothblatt: From Mind Loading to Mind Cloning – Gene to Meme to Beme: A Perspective on the Nature of Humanity