The Annual Symposium: (Pro) Longevity: The Convergence of Ethics, Tech and Spirituality

(Pro) Longevity: The Convergence of Ethics, Technology and Spirituality

What are our assumptions about aging, expected longevity and appropriate medical care?
How do we expect technology to contribute?
Can we go too far when it comes to longevity?

  • Longevity is increasing due to “technological innovations, big data and artificial intelligence” (WEF, 2021).
  • The Human Mortality Database reports 50% of babies born in 2007 have a life expectancy of 103 years.

While the impact of Intelligent Assistive Technology (IAT), is growing, the ethics of IAT often neglect spirituality. This disregard can result in IAT that either fails to address core spiritual needs or presents potential harm to those needs.

How might tech affect spirituality? How might the valuing of spirituality affect tech?

Questions arise of autonomy and self-determination, need for community, privacy of personal data, and uncertainty about safety and reliability.

We will focus our attention for this seventh annual event on this intersection of technology, ethics, and spirituality, especially as they relate to aging.


(Pro) Longevity: The Convergence of Ethics, Technology and Spirituality

Friday, September 30, 2022
Nationwide Event and Conference Center + on-line

8:30    2022 Registration Opens

9:30    Welcome and Introductions to the Day, Rev. Beth Long-Higgins

10:00 Keynote Address: Technology and Aging: the Ethical Issues, Dr. Tracy J. Trothen

11:00 Panel Conversation with Dr. Trothen

  • Moderator: Dr. Kenneth V. Daniel, President and Chief Executive Officer, United Church Homes
  • Joseph F. Coughlin, Director, MIT AgeLab
  • Liz Cramer, Post-Acute Care Director, CDW Healthcare Division
  • Ravi Kunduru, Founder and CEO, QurHealth

12:00 Lunch

1:00    Keynote Address: What does Spirituality Have to Do With It? (How tech affects spirituality and how the valuing of spirituality might affect tech) Dr. Tracy J. Trothen

2:00    Panel Conversation with Dr. Trothen

  • Moderator: Susan H. McFadden, Professor Emerita, Psychology, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.
  • Dr. Elyse Berry, Associate for Advocacy and Leadership Development, United Church of Christ Council for Health and Human Service Ministries
  • Jessica Chapman Lape, Assistant Professor of Interreligious Chaplaincy and Program Director for Interreligious Chaplaincy, United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities
  • Craig Dove, Staff Chaplain, OhioHealth Hospice

3:00    Final Thoughts

3:15    Adjourn

Dr. Tracy J. Trothen, PhD, is Professor of ethics at Queen’s University, jointly appointed to the School of Religion and the School of Rehabilitation Therapy. In The School of Religion, she teaches courses on religion and technology, biomedical ethics, sport, and feminist theology, and in The School of Rehabilitation Therapy, she teaches courses on ethics and also spirituality in the graduate Aging and Health and Rehabilitation Health Leadership programs. She is a certified Supervisor-Educator in Clinical Spiritual Care (CASC), and an ordained minister in The United Church of Canada. Trothen is the author or editor of numerous articles and chapters, and nine books including Religion and the Technological Future: An Introduction to Biohacking, A.I., and Transhumanism (co-authored, 2021), Spirituality, Sport, and Doping: More than Just a Game (2018), and Winning the Race? Religion, Hope, and Reshaping the Sport Enhancement Debate (2015). She is a social and biomedical ethicist who specializes in moral distress, enhancement ethics, sport, spirituality, and Christianity. Professor Trothen cochairs the American Academy of Religion‘s (AAR) Artificial Intelligence Seminar and is a Fellow of the International Society for Science and Religion (ISSR). Her most recent book is Religion and the Technological Future.

Rev. Dr. Elyse Berry, DMin, BCC, joined the United Church of Christ Council for Health and Human Service Ministries (CHHSM) team as Associate for Advocacy & Leadership Development in 2019 after nearly a decade working in healthcare. With a passion for social justice and spiritual development, she was a postdoctoral fellow in bioethics at the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. Elyse was a board-certified hospital chaplain for more than seven years and holds certifications in a variety of holistic care modalities.

Rev. Dr. Jessica Chapman Lape, PhD., is a womanist pastoral theologian, clinically-trained chaplain, and community-trained doula. Jessica is ordained in the United Church of Christ and received her Ph.D. in Practical Theology from Claremont School of Theology. She is assistant professor of interreligious chaplaincy and directs the interreligious chaplaincy program at United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities. She writes, speaks, and teaches at the intersection of faith, culture, and care and is an advocate for cultural compassion among all those who provide spiritual care.

Dr. Joseph F. Coughlin, PhD., is founder and director of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology AgeLab. He teaches in MIT’s Department of Urban Studies & Planning and the Sloan School’s Advanced Management Program. He conducts research on the impact of global demographic change and technology trends on consumer behavior and business strategy. A Behavioral Sciences Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America and a Fellow of Switzerland’s World Demographics & Ageing Forum, he was named by Fast Company Magazine as one the ‘100 Most Creative in Business’ and by the Wall Street Journal as inventing the future of retirement. He is author of The Longevity Economy: Inside the World’s Fastest Growing, Most Misunderstood Market (Public Affairs, 2017).

Liz Cramer is the Post-Acute Care Director for CDW Healthcare Division. Liz comes to CDW with 20 years of multi-site experience in therapy/SNF operations across the country. She has a track record of building and leading strong, successful teams that work hand in hand with facility nursing administration. Liz has a keen understanding on how the industry leverages data analytics to drive patient out-comes and facility census. She is skilled in revenue enhancement and capture of care for multiple payors including Medicare, Managed Care and Private Insurance.

Rev. Dr. Kenneth V. Daniel serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of United Church Homes, the 21st largest multisite nonprofit senior living organization in the U.S. according to the 2021 LeadingAge Ziegler 200 ranking, serving more than 5500 residents in its owned and managed communities in 15 states and two Native American nations. Over the past 30 years, Rev. Daniel has spent extensive time in senior living, affordable housing and skilled nursing leadership positions also serving as a licensed nursing home administrator. He holds a master’s degree in public administration from Marywood University and earned master’s degrees from United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities and from Moravian Theological Seminary. Additionally, he received an honorary doctorate from Heidelberg University in Ohio. Rev. Daniel has earned Fellow and Certified Nursing Home Administrator status with the American College of Healthcare Administrators and previously served as Senior Examiner with the American Healthcare Association’s Quality Award program. Rev. Daniel currently serves on several community, church and professional boards and is the immediate past Chairman of the Board of LeadingAge Ohio.

Dr. Craig M. Dove, MDiv PhD BCC, has worked as a Staff chaplain at OhioHealth Hospice since 2015. During that time he has also served as co-chair of the Ethics Advisory Committee for Community Based Services for OhioHealth, as well as serving on the board of the BioEthics Network of Ohio since 2017. He is a recorded minister in the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). Prior to his work in chaplaincy, he taught philosophy at a various colleges and universities in Virginia, Indiana, and New York.

Ravi Kunduru is Founder and CEO of QurHealth, a healthcare data management company offering cutting-edge healthcare IT solutions rooted in knowledge and innovative technologies, such as analytics, big data, and artificial intelligence, to help people live healthier lives. He also serves as President and Chairman of Ventech Solutions and is Founder and Trustee of the Kunduru Foundation supporting various humanitarian, education, healthcare and faith based charitable activities in the USA and India.

Dr. Susan H. McFadden, PhD, served as Professor of Psychology at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh for sixteen years. She also served as chair of the Psychology Department from 2000-2006. Her doctoral work in Psychology and Religion at Drew University focused on older adults. She has published numerous works on religion, spirituality, and aging and is the 2013 recipient of the William C. Bier Award for contributions to the field of psychology, religion and spirituality from the American Psychological Association. She is the author of Dementia-friendly communities: Why We Need Them and How We Can Create Them from Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

2022 Annual Symposium

Nationwide Event

and Conference Center

Friday, September 30, 2022

100 Green Meadows Dr S

Lewis Center, Ohio 43035

9:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Registration begins at 8:30 a.m.

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