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The Zukunftsblog provides a forum for ETH experts to write about socially relevant research topics and sketch their ideas about the future. Blog posts reflect the personal opinions of their authors.


Virtual reality, digital manufacturing and machine learning: the opportunities and risks that digitalisation presents for society.

Posts on digitalisation


Maintaining quality of life into old age, effective prevention and personalised treatment of disease: health and medicine rank among humanity's most basic concerns.

Posts on health


World food security, energy supply and climate change: protecting our environment and natural resources represents the global challenge of our time.

Posts on sustainability

All blog posts

27.03.2020 | Prof. Gudela Grote | Digitalisation

Boundaries take on new meanings

Gudela Grote

With many of us thrown into an unusual work situation, now’s a good moment to think about boundaries, says Gudela Grote.

26.03.2020 | Prof. Reto Knutti | Sustainability

The value of science for critical decisions

Reto Knutti

In crises such as coronavirus, the value of research and facts becomes clear. Even when experts don’t (and can’t) have all the answers, we’ve got to listen to what they have to say, says Reto Knutti.

13.03.2020 | Prof. Viola Vogel | Health

Reducing the risk of infection

Viola Vogel

Biology shows us that there are additional ways to reduce the risk of serious coronavirus infections, in addition to hand hygiene and keeping distance, Viola Vogel writes.

02.03.2020 | Dr. Suchita Srinivasan | Health

Using social networks to hasten a switchover

Suchita Srinivasan

When making decisions, we’re often influenced by our social environment. This can be used in a targeted way to encourage people to adopt a healthier, cleaner lifestyle, writes Suchita Srinivasan.

18.02.2020 | Dr. Christine Bratrich | Sustainability

More commitment to the SDGs!

Christine Bratrich

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out the way to a more sustainable world. But the 17 goals are not yet firmly anchored in everyday university life. Christine Bratrich feels this has to change.

15.02.2020 | Prof. Beat Christen | Health

There will be organisms without biological parents

Beat Christen

Bioengineers are on the brink of developing artificial organisms that will open up new applications in medicine and industry. Beat Christen discusses their risks and benefits.

10.02.2020 | Hans Gersbach | Digitalisation

A bit more democracy?

Hans Gersbach

What should society do about the tech giants’ growing monopolies? Let’s democratise them by giving users a say in decisions, suggests Hans Gersbach.

05.02.2020 | Prof. Tom Crowther | Sustainability

Four Principles of Forest Restoration

Tom Crowther

Planting a trillion trees is just one part of a broader solution to help fight climate change. Thomas Crowther argues for a holistic and principled approach to reforestation and cutting carbon emissions.

17.01.2020 | Dr. Anna Jobin | Digitalisation

Ethics guidelines galore for AI – so now what?

Anna Jobin

Anna Jobin has investigated together with researchers from the Health Ethics and Policy Lab which ethics guidelines for artificial intelligence already exist, and finds that ethical AI is by no means merely a technical matter.

15.01.2020 | Prof. Jacob Corn | Health

Genome editing at the crossroads of scandal and cure

Jacob Corn

Genetic modification of babies in China one year ago was universally condemned. At the same time, CRISPR treatments are on their way into our clinics. Jacob Corn explains the difference.

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