Perils of Successful Space Travel

This class has passed
This class has passed

What’s it all about?

Travelling to the stars has been a fascination and hope of humankind for much of our existence. Now a new age of commercial space travel and ownership of the moon is rising.

Many experts suggest that unless humanity expands beyond the planet Earth we will become extinct. But assuming we can overcome all the massive challenges that successful space travel presents us, we will face an even greater challenge – figuring out how to live when we have been freed from the limits of one world.

Will this technological boom be matched with an equivalent renaissance of the human spirit? Or will the dark parts of human nature come along for the ride, festering in a universe where all the old rules have been removed? How can we choose which outcome we get?

What will we cover?

In this beginner’s class we will talk about the likely nature and timeline for space travel. We will consider the implications of the travel itself and the risks that are associated with starting a civilisation from scratch.

What are the possibilities of galactic moral relativism? What can we do today to shape what our future in the stars looks like? What rights can we claim over extraterrestrial soil and species (if we meet any)?

Who will be teaching?

Gordon Young is a professional ethicist and environmental consultant. He is a lecturer in Professional Ethics at RMIT, Principle at Ethilogical Consulting and writer at, where he explores a new topic each week.