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

Text Message Medicine: A Tip From the Developing World

April 6, 2013, 9:30 AM

What's the Latest Development?

To decrease the cost of American health care services, and improve the lives of patients who receive them, medical professionals are taking lessons from the developing world, where low-cost treatment is a basic requirement. "At St. Gabriel's Hospital in Malawi, for example, 75 community health workers were trained to use text messages to communicate patient information, appointment reminders, and other health-related notifications to patients. Through this mobile health, or mHealth, initiative, the hospital saved approximately 2,048 hours of worker time and $3,000 in fuel, while doubling the capacity of the tuberculosis treatment program."

What's the Big Idea?

A unique benefit that text messages enjoy, for now, is their high rate of opening. People will generally read a text message they receive 97 percent of the time, compared to a rate of between 5 and 20 percent for emails. This compliments the general trend of inexpensive health care technology flowing from developing countries to developed ones. Patricia Mechael, the executive director of mHealth Alliance at the United Nations Foundation, said: "I [frequently] find myself giving talks in the U.S. about what America can learn about mHealth from Africa, Asia, and Latin America."

Read it at The Atlantic

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com


Text Message Medicine: A Ti...

Newsletter: Share: