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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Blog Posts

Mind Matters

Of Privilege and Polanski

almost 5 years ago

The human mind is full of contradictory impulses. For instance, I doubt that many of us want the President to do his own laundry. He's not like us; he has a special talent that we want him to exercise, so give him a pass on the socks. At the same time, we're innately egalitarian, at least ...

Mind Matters

Merchants of False Hope

almost 5 years ago

Francis Collins and J. Craig Venter are the scientists whose names will always be associated with mapping of the human genome -- after racing to complete the job, the two announced in 2000 that it was done, three years early. So it's impressive that this year they both announced another shared ...

Strange Maps

416 - Iceland Crushed by Europe

almost 5 years ago

  With a society prospering in splendid isolation and a population smaller than one-thousandth of the EU total (1), Iceland until recently had little incentive to be subsumed by the Brussels bureaucracy, an institution judged by many to be like the bus in Speed: racing towards an undesirable ...


Will Obama's Nobel Be a Distraction?

almost 5 years ago

Last week I wrote that President Obama was given the Nobel Peace Prize more as a show of support for the multilateral policy he advocates than for anything he has actually done. But I also argued that the award is uncomfortably at odds with the fact that the United States is currently fighting wars ...

Daylight Atheism

Letter to a Young Skeptic of Color

almost 5 years ago

By Sikivu Hutchinson For the longest time religion has simply been an accepted way of life for you, unchallenged, unquestioned, a shopworn ritual, gentle as a vise. If you're churchgoing the first seeds of doubt may be planted after squirming through umpteen marathon prayer sessions. If you're ...

Waq al-Waq

Sa'dah: The Best and Worst

almost 5 years ago

Over the weekend I read one of the best - in English - articles on Sa'dah that I have seen in a long time and one of the worst. First, the best comes from a French researcher, Pierre Bernin, and appeared in Le Monde Diplomatique. Here is a link, but the article is behind a wall. (I read it on a ...