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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Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

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Discipline and Practice

The Big Idea for Tuesday, May 28, 2013

No one has more questions than a 4-year old. It is a reflection of the child's development at this age and the way the child is experiencing the world. So what happens when the child grows older and goes to high school? We start evaluating the student with grades and pressuring them to succeed according to a rigid set of standards.

Is it any surprise that the student's curiosity about the world starts to shut down? As studies show, high school students ask about one question of substance per month in the classroom.

If the purpose of learning is to build the skills essential for future success, the way that we grade is neither a good indicator of that success or a good motivator to learn.



  1. 1 The Purpose of Philosophy is to Ask the Right Questions (Video)
    Slavoj Žižek Postcards from Žižek
  2. 2 How to Ask the Right Question
    Hal Gregersen
  3. 3 Innovate, Or Get Out of the Way!
    Daniel Honan Think Tank

Discipline and Practice

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