What is Big Think?  

We are Big Idea Hunters…

We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

Big Think Features:

12,000+ Expert Videos


Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers


Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge


Big Think’s Edge learning platform for career mentorship and professional development provides engaging and actionable courses delivered by the people who are shaping our future.

Find out more

Monkey See, Monkey Do, Monkey Get Phone Number . . .

October 22, 2009, 10:08 AM

What makes a woman appealing to a new male acquaintance? Imitation, according to this study, published in this month's issue of the journal Social Influence.


As described here, Nicolas Gueguen, a psychologist, sent three women out to speed-date 66 men. In some of the encounters, the women mimicked the men's movements (for example, scratching a cheek) five times in five minutes, and also imitated the men's phrases (again, five times in five minutes). On other dates, the women didn't do any of that.


Men who had been imitated were more likely to say their female date was attractive, that the date had gone well, and that they wanted to give the woman their contact information.


Does it work this way when the genders are reversed? Does it work for same-sex dates in the same way? If you know, let me know in the comments.



Monkey See, Monkey Do, Monk...

Newsletter: Share: