The EPSRC Horizon CDT is funding impact grants for the Creating Our Lives in Data CDT students to undertake impact activities alongside their PhD research. The fund aims to accelerate impact and further engagement with these projects.
Angela Thornton, a member of the 2019 cohort, was successful in her application for an Impact Activity Small Grant.
Angela’s research explores the futuristic concept of mind uploading. Although this possibility may seem speculative, it is supported by ongoing research into whole-brain emulation or “reverse engineering” the brain.
Angela has created the website Afterlives which explores mind uploading. Here participants can experience both utopian and dystopian futures once their characters’ minds are uploaded when their physical bodies die. This storytelling website is simple to use, simply accessible, and has shown to be both engaging and thought-provoking. Statistics and participant testimonies support the impact Angela’s research is having on awareness, understanding and engagement on this topic.
The website experience is the result of Angela’s collaboration with 12 participants on the mind uploading journey, which began in 2020. After reporting that the preliminary results were positive, Angela used the Horizon CDT impact award to bring on 40 additional participants. According to the results of the extended study, the website has succeeded in achieving its objectives and will contribute to future public engagement.
You can read Angela’s update on her Impact activity on the CDT blog.
Tags: AWARENESS, impact grant, Mind Uploading, PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT, STORYTELLING