Introducing Yuri Milner’s Short Book Eureka Manifesto
Published in 2021, Eureka Manifesto: The Mission for Our Civilisation, is a short book about humanity’s place in the cosmos. The author, science philanthropist and tech investor Yuri Milner, covers several thought-provoking concepts in the book, some of which are evident in the philanthropic work he has completed since joining the Giving Pledge.
These philanthropic projects include the Breakthrough Prize, the Breakthrough Junior Challenge, and the Breakthrough Initiatives.
Who Is Yuri Milner?
Yuri Milner is an Israeli billionaire who invests primarily in technology and science. He founded DST Global, a venture capital firm with a portfolio that has included some of the world’s leading internet companies, like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Snapchat, and Airbnb.
Yuri Milner is also a Giving Pledge signatory who, along with his wife Julia and over 200 of the world’s richest individuals, has committed to using his wealth to help tackle humanitarian challenges. In his Giving Pledge letter, Yuri Milner writes about his desire to fund scientific brilliance and invest in our shared future.
To fulfil their Giving Pledge vow, the Milners have co-founded and funded several science-focused enterprises, including the Breakthrough Prize, the Breakthrough Junior Challenge, and the Breakthrough Initiatives.
The Breakthrough Prize
Often referred to as the “Oscars of Science,” each year, the Breakthrough Prize awards millions of dollars in prize money to scientists and mathematicians who have made significant contributions to their fields. To inspire future generations of great minds, the Breakthrough Prize is broadcast live to televisions around the world.
The Breakthrough Junior Challenge
The Breakthrough Junior Challenge encourages young people to engage with scientific ideas and produce short, educational videos about the concepts that interest them. Launched in 2015, the global Breakthrough Junior Challenge rewards winners with life-changing prizes worth thousands of dollars.
Previous finalists have created videos on complex subjects like our sleep cycle’s relationship with light, entropy, Gaussian curvature, and quantum superposition.
The Breakthrough Initiatives
The Breakthrough Initiatives are scientific programmes that:
- Explore the Universe using Earth- and space-based instruments.
- Search for proof of life beyond Earth.
- Encourage public debate from a planetary perspective.
The five Breakthrough Initiatives are Listen, Watch, Starshot, Message, and Discuss. In particular, Listen has made recent strides in supercharging the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) by partnering with South Africa’s MeerKAT array to intensify the hunt for alien technosignatures.
What Is Eureka Manifesto About?
Eureka Manifesto is about human civilisation, our place in the Universe, and our role in its future. The short book covers a range of scientific topics and futuristic ideas, including interstellar travel, extinction events, and the discoveries that have helped our species progress throughout history.
Eureka Manifesto opens with Yuri Milner’s argument as to why the human race needs a unified mission (something we’re currently lacking). Drawing on the “Universal Story” that we are all part of, he then suggests what this mission could be and puts forward his argument for why we must embrace this mission.
The book also contains a plan of action that suggests steps we can take to advance the mission, such as investing resources in space exploration and other key scientific disciplines.
On top of this, Yuri Milner advocates for accelerating the scientific revolution and bringing about a new age of enlightenment. In this enlightened society, everyone could share in a culture that celebrates knowledge, critical thinking, and rational argument.
Eureka Manifesto will prove inspiring reading for anyone who is interested in cosmological concepts or the future of the human race. Yuri Milner’s book is a rallying cry to embrace the extraordinary cosmic story we are part of, gaze up at the sky, and dare to dream.