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Beatriz Gato-Rivera is a theoretical physicist at the Instituto de Fisica Fundamental (previously Instituto de Matematicas y Fisica Fundamental) of the CSIC (Spanish Scientific Research Council) in Madrid. She is notable for her proposed solution to the Fermi Paradox. In her paper "Brane Worlds, the Subanthropic Principle and the Undetectability Conjecture", which appeared originally in August 2003, Gato-Rivera presents a solution to the question why we have not discovered neither detected intelligent extraterrestrial civilizations, taking into account that in our galaxy there are billions of stars millions of years older than our sun and many, or some, advanced civilizations could have expanded through the whole galaxy. According to Gato-Rivera, we may find ourselves in a universe in which there exist intelligent technological civilizations but they have chosen to be undetectable, to camouflage themselves with respect to external observers, mainly for security reasons (because advanced civilizations could also be aggressive). This proposal she call the Undetectability Conjecture. In addition, Gato-Rivera compares the situation of humans in the universe, and especially in our galaxy, to the situation of mountain gorillas on Earth, whose small civilization is completely unaware of being embedded in a much larger civilization of much more intelligent beings than themselves. The Subanthropic Principle states that we are not typical among the intelligent beings in the universe. Typical civilizations of typical galaxies would be millions of years more evolved than ours and, consequently, typical intelligent beings would be orders of magnitude more intelligent than us. In the case of our Solar System, the citizens of the superior galactic civilization, who would be the owners of this and many more solar systems, necessarily would be non-aggressive (otherwise we would have detected them!) and they would treat terrestrial human beings ecologically, as some kind of protected species. The scenario of Gato-Rivera predicts a very low probability of success for the SETI project, as she explains.

The paper was very much appreciated by many of the author's colleagues, even by very prominent ones, although it has also been criticized as being unscientific, belonging more appropriately to the category of science fiction, by several other colleagues. The reason for this discrepancy, she says, is due solely to prejudice (similar to the prejudices regarding the biological evolution discovered by Darwin and his colleagues). As a matter of fact, Gato-Rivera even coined the term the Crown of the Creation Syndrome, in her paper, to explain this kind of prejudices, which she discusses in some detail.

In November 2005 Gato-Rivera was invited to give a conference at the World Mystery Forum, in Interlaken (Switzerland), together with several other scientists in different lines of research (biologists, quantum physicists,...), including the ex-astronaut Edgar Mitchell. She published this conference shortly after that, in December 2005, and later she published another article about the Fermi Paradox in the volume "Trends in General Relativity and Quantum Cosmology", discussing the influence of the Cosmic Inflation scenario and the Brane Worlds scenario on this paradox. Most of the papers she publishes, however, deal with String Theory in Elementary Particle Physics, as well as on Representation Theory of algebras and superalgebras, and she is a recognized authority regarding "N=2 Superconformal Algebras".

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