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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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Question: What is your question?

Dan Glickman: I think that as citizens, we probably need to ask, “What sacrifices are we willing to make in order to make the country a better place?” We have a lifestyle that many generations to come will be able to have as good or better life than we do right now. And I think some Americans are asking that question, but not as much as we should. And I think the other question is, “What role do we want to be in the world of the future?” The world is changing, and I’d like to say that America is gonna dominate the world in the next 100 years; but I don’t think so. I think that we’ll have many competitors; but we still have a special obligation to be a unique force in the rest of the world. And I think we have to ask ourselves a question: “What do we want to do to achieve that kind of leadership status?” That’s where I want to go back to the American entertainment industry. There are really very few places where America can put its stamp on the world. So we do have a kind of special obligation there.

Recorded on: 7/6/07



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