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

What the New Education Business Mustn't Forget about the Nature of Learning

August 19, 2014, 9:00 AM

The national education system has been calling for reform for some time. It has also been receiving substantial reform for well over a decade, from charter schools and voucher programs to stricter testing standards and a host of technological innovations. Still, our best attempts to implement novel ideas have mostly come up short. The billions of dollars spent on new technology have produced data that is "pretty weak", according to Tom Vander Ark, the former executive director for education at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and an investor in educational technology companies.

Rather than find new ways of feeding sterile knowledge into students' brains, fresh teaching methods and new technologies must focus on establishing strong personal bonds between teachers and students. There is simply no substitute for personal relationships when it comes to education. In her Big Think interview, creator of the Teach for America program Wendy Kopp explains how the biggest challenge her teachers face are finding ways of connecting personally to students rather than integrate technology into the classroom, for example:

Perhaps the mistake of education reform is our interpretation of the word reform. We cannot hope to replace time-tested methods of nurturing children's individual curiosity. A computer screen cannot nurture; that difficult and life-altering task will always be left to teachers. If we want to support our children, we must first support their teachers. 

Read more at the New York Times

Photo credit: Shutterstock


What the New Education Busi...

Newsletter: Share: