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

Urbanization is a Public Health Menace

October 13, 2012, 8:06 PM
Urban%20ss

What's the Latest Development?

Two international scientific bodies say the planet's path toward rapid urbanization is a substantial public health threat, unless new environmental regulations are put quickly into place. A report compiled by the World Meteorological Organization and the International Global Atmospheric Chemistry project notes how quickly megacities—metropolitan areas with populations of more than 10 million—are rising in developing countries. "Many cities in developing countries are expanding rapidly with poor planning and few pollution-reduction measures,” says Zhu Tong, an atmospheric scientist at Peking University in Beijing.

What's the Big Idea?

Urban development has outpaced expectations, particularly in the East where subsistence farmers flock to cities in search of education and employment. "There are now 23 megacities in the world, compared with just two 60 years ago. Just over half of the population currently dwells in cities, and with the urban population expected to nearly double by 2050, that proportion is projected to approach 70%." More than the fact of urbanization itself, the pace of development is causing problems. "The population of city dwellers in China, for example, has risen almost five-fold since 1950, sending energy consumption skyrocketing and putting millions of cars on the roads."

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com

 

 

Urbanization is a Public He...

Newsletter: Share: