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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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Diversity

The Big Idea for Monday, June 23, 2014

Are there common differences between letters of recommendation written for men versus those written for women? One would think not. If the experiences are similar and the job is the same, why should the letters differ all that much?

Valerie Purdie-Vaughns, the Director of the Laboratory of Intergroup Relations and the Social Mind at Columbia University, talked to Big Think about unintentional bias, and how it can play tricks on our minds when it comes to diversity. Letters of recommendation written for men typically use the word "brilliant" and "genius" whereas letters written for women use "team player" and even bring in information about women's personal lives. So even if someone is writing a letter to highly recommend a woman, unconscious bias can get in the way and actually hurt those we're trying to help.

Today's big idea examines diversity--why organizations need it and how to achieve it.

 

 

Perspectives

  1. 1 Mind Tricks
    Big Think Editors Think Tank
  2. 2 Better Business
    Big Think Editors Big Think Edge
  3. 3 Smarter Decisions
    Big Think Editors Big Think Edge
  4. 4 Lost in Translation
    Big Think Editors Big Think Edge
 

Diversity

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