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

1

Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers

2

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

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge

3

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
Close
With rendition switcher

Transcript

Question: How can the media improve its coverage of Africa?

Uzodinma Iweala: I mean I think one is allowing more African voices, first of all. I mean I think there are . . . there are . . . there is a perspective on events that you’ll get from somebody who is from that place, or who is rooted in that place in a way that a reporter isn’t. If that person has the journalistic skills obviously necessary to tell the story, I think you get a certain . . . You’ll get a different perspective. You might get a more nuanced perspective; one that will . . . will step away from the broad strokes. This is a . . . you know and everybody loves the word “tribal conflict”. This is a tribal conflict. This is, you know, just people killing each other within . . . Like you’ll be able to understand like, “No, no, no, no wait. This is over this.” Like if this is . . . if this is the root cause, right, maybe we need to address this as opposed to just saying that, you know, these people are . . . this problem is unsolvable; it’s just . . . they just like to kill each other. I think that with more voices that say that, right . . . with more voices that bring . . . bring that perspective out, I think you’ll have a very different understanding of what it means to be involved in different issues on the continent. Also with more stories that focus on the positive, right . . . I mean I . . . we’ve talked about the negative because, you know, in a sense you do have to . . . you do have to address that because that’s the predominant way that people view this place. But at the same time like, you know, you talk about, for example, that 18 or 19 year old kid who’s doing that . . . All sorts of stories exist all over the place. You talk about . . . talking about those, bringing out those stories rather than focusing on creating, in whatever stories you write, a climate of fear, uncertainty, and despair, is there a way to work at also creating a climate of hope, right? Or creating an atmosphere of hope in what you write? And I think that’s really important. I mean I think both stories . . . both sets of . . . of situations need to be addressed. And I’m not one who’s gonna say, “Look. Don’t talk about the bad. Let’s just talk about the good.” That is useless. But the bottom line is like the good never gets talked about. The bad is always talked about. And I think that we really need to focus on how we can . . . how we can do that. What kind of stories can we tell that show that . . . that people aren’t creating; that people are living; that people are enjoying the lives that they live? That yes, people are living . . . that it gets hard to live in certain places, and there are certain things that are bothering people; but that doesn’t stop them from being humans and wanting more for themselves. And it’s that wanting more for yourself that allows you to better the place that you live in. You know and I think when people see that image – when people see that these people . . . this is a set of people who are working for and wanting . . . who want more and are working for that more that they want – I think that allows you to relate to that person as a human being. Versus the other image which is, you know, this is a person . . . this person has given up. No one can really relate to somebody who has given up entirely.

Recorded on: 10/7/07

 

 

Media and Africa

Newsletter: Share: