Technology & Transcendence

Symposium: Friday november 18th

Technologies mediate new  ideas  and  questions  that touch upon religious, transhumanist,  existential,  and  (post)metaphysical  notions of transcendence.



The head of the Twente’s Philosophy Department Prof. dr. Ciano Aydin will chair this day.









Opening: Peter-Paul Verbeek


Stefan Lorenz


Transhumanism and the Land of Cockaigne



       Response Ciano Aydin and Q&A


Amanda Lagerkvist

Technospirituality, the Internet

            & the Value of the Void



       Response Johnny Harz Søraker and Q&A



Lunch + Coffee


Inigo Bocken

The Splendor of a Technician’s Spirituality



       Response Peter-Paul Verbeek and Q&A


Jos de Mul

The Wikipedia Religion



       Response René Munnik and Q&A





Jonne Hoek

Technocyphers of Transcendence



       Q&A, Plenary Discussion


                       Drinks after 17.00



Prof. dr. Stefan Lorenz Sorgner (John Cabot University Rome)

Prof. Dr. Stefan Lorenz Sorgner teaches philosophy at John Cabot University in Rome and is director and co-founder of the Beyond Humanism Network, Fellow at the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies (IEET), Research Fellow at the Ewha Institute for the Humanities at Ewha Womans University in Seoul and Visiting Fellow at the Ethics Centre of the Friedrich-Schiller-University in Jena. He is author and editor of more than 10 books, e.g. Menschenwürde nach Nietzsche (WBG 2010). In addition, he is Editor-in-Chief and Founding Editor of the “Journal of Posthuman Studies” (a double-blind peer review journal forthcomin with Penn State University Press in 2017). Furthermore, he is in great demand as a speaker in all parts of the world (e.g. TEDx; World Humanities Forum) and a regular contact person of national and international journalists and media representatives (e.g. Die Zeit). 

Dr. Amanda Lagerkvist (Stockholm University)

Amanda Lagerkvist is Associate Professor of Media and Communication Studies and Wallenberg Academy Fellow at Stockholm University. Within her research program “Existential Terrains: Memory and Meaning in Cultures of Connectivity” funded by the Knut and Alice Wallenberg foundation (2014-2018) she is currently conducting research on the existential and experiential dimensions of digitalization, with a specific focus on digital memory cultures. Amanda Lagerkvist’s contributions to the field of cultural studies have expanded the field of Media and Communication Studies. Her qualitative research interests intersect several areas: media memory studies, media and religion, the phenomenology of media, media space, mobilities, urban theory, and American Studies. Her latest book is the monograph Media and Memory in New Shanghai: Western Performances of Futures Past, which was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2013. She is co-editor of Strange Spaces: Explorations into Mediated Obscurity, published by Ashgate in 2009.

Prof. dr. Jos de Mul (Erasmus University Rotterdam)

Prof. dr. Jos de Mul (1956) is professor in Philosophical Anthropology and its History and head of the section Philosophy of Man and Culture. Moreover, he is the Scientific Director of the research institute 'Philosophy of Information and Communication Technology' (φICT). De Mul’s research focuses on the (partly overlapping) domains of philosophical anthropology, philosophy of art and culture, and the philosophy of information and communication technologies. He has published nineteen books and more than hundred eighty contributions to edited books and articles in various scientific journals. He also contributes on regular basis to leading national quality newspapers in The Netherlands, such as de Volkskrant and NRC Handelsblad. His work has been published and/or translated in more than twelve languages. Among his books are Romantic Desire in (Post)Modern Art and Philosophy (State University of New York Press, 1999), The Tragedy of Finitude (Yale University Press, 2004), and Cyberspace Odyssey (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010).

Prof. dr. Inigo Bocken (Radboud University Nijmegen)

Prof. dr. Inigo Bocken is a philosopher, religious studies scholar, scholar in medieval studies and scientific director of the Titus Brandsma Institute for spirituality at the Radboud University in Nijmegen. His specialism concerns the relation between religion, politics in (early) modernity. Inigo Bocken published extensively on the work of Nicholas of Cusa and currently studies the theoretical presuppositions of the Devotio Moderna and Michel de Certeau. Recently, Inigo Bocken has been appointed professor in philosophy at the Cusanus Hochschule in Bernkastel-Kues with social philosophy as main focus.

PhD cand. Jonne Hoek (University of Twente)

Jonne Hoek studied philosophy at the Radboud University Nijmegen and The Humbuld Universität zu Berlin. Currently he is a PhD candidate at Twente University working within the VICI-program “Theorising Technological Mediation” on the metaphysics track, specialising in the  technological mediation of transcendence.


Prof. dr. ir. René Munnik (Tilburg University)

Prof. dr. ir. René Munnik’s research focuses on the anthropological and culture philosophical question of the shifts in meaning of Christian religiosity in our current technological culture. Central research questions are: what are the links between the technisation of late Modern culture and trends such as secularisation, fragmentisation, individualisation? Is there a kind of readiness towards transcendence that is proper to our high-tech culture?

Prof. dr. Ciano Aydin (University of Twente)

Ciano Aydin is Department Chair and Director of Education at the Department of Philosophy, University of Twente. He is also Thomas More Professor of Philosophy at Delft University of Technology. Aydin’s research focuses on issues related to identity and (information) technology. His main areas of interest are philosophy of technology, anthropology, phenomenology, philosophy of mind, ethics, philosophy of religion, metaphysics, epistemology, semiotics, Peirce, Nietzsche, and Aristotle.

Dr. Johnny Hartz Søraker (twente University)

Johnny Harz Søraker is Assistant Professor of Philosophy of technology at the Department of Philosophy, University of Twente. His main research interests lie in the intersections between Information Technology, on the one hand, and both theoretical and practical philosophy, on the other. He often grounds his work in psychological research, especially in the field of Positive Psychology. He has published and lectured extensively on issues such as the ethical, societal and psychological effects of technology (especially related to the notion of well-being), Internet governance and the moral status of information.

Prof. dr. ir. Peter Paul Verbeek (Twente University)

Peter-Paul Verbeek (1970) is professor of philosophy of technology at the Department of Philosophy, vice dean of the School of Behavioral, Management, and Social Sciences, and co-director of the DesignLab at the University of Twente, The Netherlands. He is a member of UNESCO – COMEST (Committee on the Ethics of Science and Technology), of the Dutch Concil for the Humanities, of the Supervisory Board of TNO (Dutch Organization for applied scientific research), of the board of the Rathenau Institute, of the steering committee Responsible Innovation (NWO – Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research), and of the Center for Ethics and Health (Ministry of Health). Verbeek’s research focuses on the philosophy of human-technology relations, and aims to contribute to philosophical theory, ethical reflection, and practices of design and innovation.


This symposium is part of the NWO funded VICI-program: Theorizing Technological Mediation, led by Prof. dr. ir. Peter Paul Verbeek.