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.

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

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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.

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Book Think Posts

Books, covered and uncovered

Book Think

Is Dumbledore Still in the Closet?

about 2 years ago

Five years ago this October, J. K. Rowling outed one of the principal characters in her Harry Potter series before a delighted audience at Carnegie Hall. The final installment in the series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, had appeared three months earlier, and Rowling was riding a high tide ...

Book Think

The Portrait of a Lady, in Fifty Shades of Grey

over 2 years ago

With the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy topping bestseller lists worldwide, it is now fair to argue that the best and worst novelists in the English language share a last name. At the very least the contrast between Henry and E. L. James will provide rich material for future graduate theses: one is a ...

Book Think

What If Everything Went Straight to Hell?

over 2 years ago

A Q&A With Dr. John L. Casti, author, X-Events: The Collapse of Everything Dr. John L. Casti is a complexity scientist. This is one of those job descriptions I would love to flaunt on business cards and over cocktails: Hostess: And what does that involve, exactly? Me: Yes, well. [Frowning ...

Book Think

Is Thornton Wilder God?

over 2 years ago

People are not talking enough about The Bridge of San Luis Rey. No question, it’s a well-respected novel: it won the Pulitzer in 1928 and came in at #37 on the MLA’s list of “100 Best Novels of the Twentieth Century.” It was adapted, apparently, into a 2004 Robert De Niro film, and it had a brief ...

Book Think

Bradbury, Borges, and the Future of Media

over 2 years ago

Who knew that Jorge Luis Borges, the great Argentine fiction writer and maestro of high literary culture, was a Martian Chronicles fan? Now that you know, doesn’t it seem fitting? In Borges’s Selected Non-Fictions I came across the following tribute to Ray Bradbury, who died this past week at 91 ...

Book Think

In Memoriam: Paul Fussell (1924–2012)

over 2 years ago

I’d like to add to the recent wave of eulogies in honor of Paul Fussell, poetry and culture critic, veteran of the Second World War and author of a classic study on the First, who died this past week at age 88. Brave, ornery, and fascinating even when wrong, he argued a thesis in The Great War and ...