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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Econ201 Posts

From Big Think Chief Economist Daniel Altman: the economic knowledge you need to navigate a volatile world.


Latest News: Economists Agree

over 1 year ago

Imagine if you could ask the Most Valuable Players of all 47 Super Bowls what they’d learned about winning football games. Wouldn’t that be a great resource for any coach, player, commentator, or fan? As it happens, just such a resource is now available in economics, yet almost no one is using it ...


Another BRIC in the Wall?

over 1 year ago

What's the Big Idea? Ten years after Goldman Sachs dubbed the countries Brazil, Russia, India and China BRICs, what does this term still mean? How have these economies changed? Are they good places to do business? Are there other strong candidates to be added to this group? These questions ...


China: From Drag to Dragon

over 1 year ago

What's the Big Idea? The conventional wisdom among economists just a few years ago was that China was manipulating its currency, causing a significant drag on the global economy. Holding down the value of its currency made exports cheaper and thus China more competitive in the global marketplace ...


More Spending That Pays for Itself

over 1 year ago

The latest bout of Washington’s sporadic obsession with reducing deficits is coming at an unhealthy time. Despite the fact that the cost of paying the nation’s debts is now extremely low by historical standards, Democrats and Republicans are talking gravely about the need for belt-tightening. They ...


Taxation in Theory and Reality

almost 2 years ago

The debate over the fiscal cliff has spawned a multitude of suggestions for reforming the tax system, including my own.  One possible reason for the wide range of proposals, even from mainstream economists, is that the recommendations of standard economic theory may be very different from what the ...


Reactions to the Wealth Tax

almost 2 years ago

I’ve received dozens of emails since my New York Times op-ed proposing a wealth tax came out on Monday. My goal with the piece was primarily to refocus the inequality debate in the United States on wealth, rather than income. Wealth inequality in the United States is among the most extreme in the ...


The Cult of the Singularity

almost 2 years ago

Friends, a new world is waiting for all of us. It is a world without want, where every need is satisfied by boundless resources. It is a world of friendship, where war does not exist. And when we get there, we'll achieve immortality. I'm not talking about Heaven, Nirvana, or some other religious ...


Time is Money (Really)

almost 2 years ago

Companies are always trying to develop products that make our lives better, but these days some of the most advanced technologies are being aimed at a category that used to be the province of dishwashers and no-iron shirts: goods and services that give us more time. In our daily lives, we all ...