Malcolm Gladwell: What if presidents were chosen by lottery?

Join Radiolab's Latif Nasser at 1pm ET today as he chats with Malcolm Gladwell live on Big Think.

Can voters really predict who will be a good leader? Malcolm Gladwell joins Big Think Live to discuss this how lotteries could, in theory, distribute leadership more effectively, from government elections, college admissions, and grant applications.


In this live stream, you'll learn:

    • How Malcolm Gladwell thinks through the programming for his podcast Revisionist History, and how the coronavirus pandemic affected the show
    • Why the premise that voters can predict who will be a good leader may be a poor one
    • How a lottery system might affect government elections, college admissions, and grant applications—in theory
    • Why the distinction between holding office and running for office is key
    • About the storytelling value that can be derived from deliberately leaving questions open ended
    • + get Gladwell's take on fake news and discover the one book her believes every student should read

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    Credit: Getty Images
    Sponsored by Northwell Health
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    New research suggests you can't fake your emotional state to improve your work life — you have to feel it.

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    Personal Growth
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  • Further research suggests learning to attune our emotions for deep acting is a beneficial work-life strategy.
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    World's oldest work of art found in a hidden Indonesian valley

    Archaeologists discover a cave painting of a wild pig that is now the world's oldest dated work of representational art.

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    "You dream about these kinds of moments when you're a kid," said lead paleontologist David Schmidt.

    Credit: David Schmidt / Westminster College
    Surprising Science
    • The triceratops skull was first discovered in 2019, but was excavated over the summer of 2020.
    • It was discovered in the South Dakota Badlands, an area where the Triceratops roamed some 66 million years ago.
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    What can Avicenna teach us about the mind-body problem?

    The Persian polymath and philosopher of the Islamic Golden Age teaches us about self-awareness.

    Photo by Andrew Spencer on Unsplash
    Mind & Brain
    Philosophers of the Islamic world enjoyed thought experiments.
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