Fifth Van Riessen Memorial Lecture – 29 November 2019

Education, Enhancement and the Pursuit of the Good

The lecture by Dr. David Lewin will address education and technology as different ways to improve the human condition. While both are oriented to improvement, education tends to use conventional means to achieve this, while technological enhancements attempt to improve humans in less conventional ways. The question is why we accept certain forms of enhancement which take time and effort (like learning to read in school), while feeling uneasy about other, often quicker and cheaper forms of technical enhancement, such as improving memory and concentration with socalled smart drugs? How might religious understandings of what it means to be human inform the considerations about this issue? Do religions offer criteria for distinguishing between acceptable and unacceptable forms of enhancement? The Van Riessen Memorial Lecture is organized every two or three years at Delft University of Technology in memory of prof. dr. Hendrik Van Riessen. Van Riessen was the first professor in Christian Philosophy at this university.

David Lewin is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy of Education at Strathclyde University (United Kingdom). His research focuses on the intersections between philosophy of education, philosophy of religion and philosophy of technology. His books include among others Technology and the Philosophy of Religion (Cambridge Scholars 2011) and Educational Philosophy for a Postsecular Age (Routledge 2016). Currently, he is participating in a research project which aims to integrate technology into a view of human flourishing grounded in Christian anthropology.

Date and time: 29 November 2019, 15:30h.

Location: Delft University of Technology, Lorentzweg 1, building 22 (Faculty of Applied Sciences), room C117. This location is easily accessible by public transport and there is also sufficient parking space. More information and registration See our website

You can registrate by sending an email before 15 November to