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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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We Need to Work Less

June 3, 2010, 10:12 AM
Juliet Schor, a professor of sociology at Boston College, came in yesterday to talk about the new business as usual. What's going to bring us out of the current recession? Not job creation, Schor argues. We need to rethink the way we work, she says, meaning we should spending less time focusing on the markets. In the future, people should become more diversified in their skills—so if they have a part-time job, the rest of the time might be spent building a house, repairing a car, launching a business, building community and social connections. A "Do It Yourself" economy, some might say.

The talk with Schor echoed some of the sentiments that urban theorist Richard Florida put forth in his recent talk with Big Think. For instance, will we soon see an end to homeownership? Schor disagrees with Florida; she thinks there will be much more creative ways to move forward besides becoming a nation of renters.

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We Need to Work Less

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