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

1

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

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers

2

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

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge

3

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
Close

Mind Matters Posts

Human behavior in a post-rational world

1 22 26

Mind Matters

The Virus of Grief

717px-job_s_despair_butts_set
over 4 years ago

Just in time for the holidays comes a study that says loneliness spreads like a disease through people's social networks. In other words, that sad, isolated feeling is contagious. It's a little hard to wrap your mind around the notion that social networks transport the urge to avoid social ...

Mind Matters

What Complexity Theory Owes to Pacifism

225px-lewis_fry_richardson
almost 5 years ago

Some time in the early 1960s, the mathematician Benoît Mandelbrot was asked by a university librarian to give his advice about some dusty journals no one consulted—should they be thrown out? In one of these, an issue of General Systems Yearbook, a paper described how badly the smooth mathematical ...

Mind Matters

Department of Non-Human Minds: Soft Power

4186142878_7279aef0fa_o
almost 5 years ago

If you want to speculate about an alternate-universe world without intelligent primates (and who doesn't?), then your thoughts must turn to the octopus. Because the octopus has a large and structured brain (the ratio of brain matter to body size in octopuses is similar to that of mammals and birds ...

Mind Matters

Sad Sundays and Overconfident Surveys

717px-job_s_despair_butts_set
almost 5 years ago

A key assumption in many social sciences is that people have preferences, and that these are both knowable and stable. That's the point of surveys on every subject from whipped topping to the nature of happiness. We want to know what people want, or how they feel, or what they plan--so we ask ...