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Metalaw and SETI

Metalaw, and the social, behavioral and economic sciences

5 Feb 2011, 05:20 UTC
Metalaw, and the social, behavioral and economic sciences
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Two scholars whose work may have a bearing on the future development of Metalaw -- Kathryn Denning of York University and Margaret Race of the SETI Institute -- have published a paper on the website of the National Science Foundation entitled Rethinking Life: Astrobiology and the Future of the Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences (SBES). The paper explores the question of how advances in astrobiology research will affect humanity, and proposes that the field offers SBES researchers (including those in law) an opportunity to forge an interdisciplinary community to address the profound questions that astrobiology poses to humanity.The urgency of the issues Denning and Race address is underscored, of course, by this week's announcement of the discovery by the Kepler space telescope of more than 1200 exoplanet candidates, including 54 orbiting in the habitable zone of their parent stars -- of which 5 are approximately the size of Earth. In other words, we may be on the verge of discovering the first reasonably Earth-like exoplanet. Remarkable, considering it has only been 16 years since the discovery of the first extrasolar planetary system."[A]strobiology is causing us to rethink life itself, in myriad ways," Denning and Race write. "And whether or not ...

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