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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Divergent Thinking

The Big Idea for Sunday, January 13, 2013

Creativity is required more than ever in today's world. This skill is, after all, what separates the human brain from machines. Our brains also have the unfortunate habit, however, of censoring some of our best ideas before they even have a chance.

So what are the tools we possess that enable divergent thinking, or the fearless generation of ideas? Improvisation is one of the them. In today's lesson, Bob Kulhan says the essentials of improv involve openness on the one hand, as well as the ability to add to an idea by either deconstructing it or approaching it from a different angle. 

These two complimentary tools are captured in the phrase "Yes, and," which Kulhan says is the key to understanding improv. If you can master these both, Kulhan says it will lead to greater creativity and ultimately innovation. 



  1. 1 Improv Queen: Tina Fey's Soft, Sloppy Skills Explored
    Jonathan Fowler and Elizabeth Rodd Big Think TV
  2. 2 What Improv Teaches Us About Creativity
    Sam McNerney Moments of Genius
  3. 3 Margaret Cho: Tenacity Wins Out Over Nepotism and Talent
    Megan Erickson Think Tank
  4. 4 Improv 101: The Key to Thinking Fearlessly
    Jonathan Fowler and Elizabeth Rodd Big Think TV

Divergent Thinking

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