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

Mental Health

The Big Idea for Sunday, July 21, 2013

In today's lesson, Kas Thomas points to a study, which is one among many of its kind, that concludes that "depression is a heritable trait that exists on a continuum of varying severity and duration."

The problem, however, is that the study and others like it, fails to show that conclusion. In fact, there is, as yet, no known gene for anything psychiatric, Thomas points out. And moreover, all indications are that none will be found.



  1. 1 Mental Illness: It's Not in Your Genes
    Kas Thomas Devil in the Data
  2. 2 Debunking Common Brain Myths
    Sam Wang
  3. 3 The Moving Goalposts of Mental Illness
    Neurobonkers Neurobonkers
  4. 4 Our Prison System Is Our De Facto Mental Health Care System
    David Eagleman In Their Own Words

Mental Health

Newsletter: Share: