Dear TSC2023 participants,
As organizers of the 2023 international edition of The Science of Consciousness series (TSC2023), we want to take a moment to thank you once again for giving voice to the research on the nature of consciousness. You all know very well that among all the problems in science and philosophy, consciousness is the most difficult, yet the most fascinating, as it lies at the source of the tension between science and experience, nature and individual, quantity and quality, observed and observer. It's no coincidence that our conference is the most interdisciplinary of all and has fostered intense dialogue among neuroscientists, physicists, philosophers, artificial intelligence experts, scholars of humanities, and artists.
Beyond the intellectual contributions made by all the speakers and the audience, we also want to thank you for creating an open and friendly atmosphere where we could experience a moment of equality facing a frontier that, despite differences in preparation, approach, and methodology, is shared among us all. We are all individuals who question not only what consciousness is, but also its value and its relationship with our human lives.
It's not by chance that the Consciousness Challenge has rewarded social approaches to consciousness, highlighting the intertwining of society and mind, as well as panpsychism, which suggests a resemblance between person and nature. It's also significant that the third place is shared equally by three strong hypotheses: David Chalmers' naturalistic dualism, ORCH theory by Stuart Hameroff, and the radical new hypothesis advanced by Riccardo Manzotti of the identity between mind and object, or MOI.
In particular, we want to thank the team from Bisazzagangi (Nazzareno Foti and Anna Lucentini), the technical support of Inlight (Giovanni Bombabi), Emilio Manzotti for keeping the website constantly updated, Abi Montefiore for her coordination and wise advices, and of course, all the speakers and, particularly, the plenary speakers who attended and made themselves available for a remarkable 6 days: from Anil Seth to David Chalmers, from Nicholas Humphrey to Frans De Waal, from Giorgio Vallortigara to Alberto Voltoni.
There were many touching and thought provoking moments during the conference -- from the connection between birth, delivery, and consciousness outlined by Orli Dahan, to the existential and intellectual summary offered by the legendary figure of Sir Roger Penrose, from the witty and sophisticated irony of Alex Byrne's bananas to the deep existential dialogue about the meaning of life by Nicholas Humphrey and Emanuele Castano.
In short, what can we say... It was an unforgettable week! Thanks to you all!
But we can't say goodbye without expressing a heartfelt thank you to Stuart Hameroff, who has kept the spirit of this conference alive year after year! Grazie di cuore, Stu!
A big hug to you all,
Riccardo, Antonio, and Pietro.