Chapter

Security, Unpredictability, and Evolution

Geerat J. Vermeij

in Natural Security

Published by University of California Press

Published in print January 2008 | ISBN: 9780520253476
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520934313 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520253476.003.0003
Security, Unpredictability, and Evolution

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The history of life over the last 3.5 billion years, coupled with the evolutionary principles governing living things and their interactions, provides a rich source of information about how short-term adaptation to garden-variety challenges and risks affect long-term security in the face of unpredicted calamity. This chapter begins by discussing human nature and lessons from nonhuman life and its threats, followed by the characteristics of threats and security. It then considers solutions to unpredictable phenomena, and explores how each solution affects overall strategies of life. Finally, the chapter argues that strategies against unpredictable circumstances are best served by diffuse intelligence, which allows alternative emerging hypotheses to be tested, rather than by strong central topdown control by a single authority.

Keywords: life; risks; calamity; threats; security; unpredictable circumstances

Chapter.  7396 words. 

Subjects: Evolutionary Biology

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