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CIC Vancouver: Cold War 2.0: Artificial Intelligence in the New Battle between China, Russia, and America

April 17 @ 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm EDT

About the event:
So much of what we hear about China and Russia today likens the relationship between these two autocracies and the West to a “rivalry” or a “great-power competition.” Some might consider it alarmist to say we are in the midst of a second Cold War, but that may be the only responsible way to describe today’s state of affairs.
What’s more, we have come a long way from Mao Zedong’s infamous observation that “political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.” Now we live in an age more aptly described by Vladimir Putin’s cryptic prophecy that “artificial intelligence is the future not only of Russia, but of all mankind, and whoever becomes the leader in this sphere will become ruler of the world.”
George S. Takach’s incisive and meticulously researched new volume, Cold War 2.0, is the book we need to thoroughly understand these frightening and perilous times. In the geopolitical sphere, there are no more pressing issues than the appalling mechanizations of a surveillance state in China, Russia’s brazen attempt to assert its autocratic model in Ukraine, and China’s increasingly likely plans to do the same in Taiwan.
But the key here, Takach argues, is that our new Cold War is not only ideological but technological: the side that prevails in Cold War 2.0 will be the one that bests the other in mastering the greatest innovations of our time. Artificial intelligence sits in our pockets every day—but what about AI that coordinates military operations and missile defense systems? Or the highly sophisticated semiconductor chips and quantum computers that power those missiles and a host of other weapons? And, where recently we have seen remarkable feats of bio-engineering to produce vaccines at record speed, shouldn’t we be concerned how catastrophic it would be if bio-engineering were co-opted for nefarious purposes?
Takach thoroughly examines how each of these innovations will shape the tension between democracy and autocracy, and how each will play a central role in this second Cold War. Finally, he crafts a precise blueprint for how Western democracies should handle these innovations to respond to the looming threat of autocracy—and ultimately prevail over it.
Date: Wednesday, April 17, 2024
Time: 5:00 PM – 6:15 PM
Location: McCarthy Tétrault, 745 Thurlow St, Suite 2400, 24th floor, Vancouver, BC V6E 0C5
      4:30 PM: Doors open
      5:00-5:05 PM: Introduction from the CIC Vancouver President
      5:05-5:45 PM: Guest Speaker starts
      5:45-6:05 PM: Q&A
      6:05-6:15 PM: Short networking, event close
      After 6:15 PM: Copies of his book will be available for purchase at the event, and George will be delighted to sign the books for attendees.
About the speaker:
George S. Takach holds a bachelor’s degree in history, political economy, and philosophy from the University of Toronto; a graduate degree from the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs at Carleton University; and a law degree from the University of Toronto. For forty years, he practiced technology law at McCarthy Tétrault, Canada’s premier law firm. He has written three books on technology law/tech commercial subjects—this is his first book for a general audience. He lives in Toronto!


April 17
5:00 pm - 6:30 pm EDT


McCarthy Tétrault
745 Thurlow St, Suite 2400, 24th floor
Vancouver, British Columbia V6E 0C5 Canada
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