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Playlist: The big picture

12 talks · 3h 22m · Curated by TED

The big picture (12 talks)

Must-listen talks about the future of the environment, crime, technology, government and the human race.

  • 1.
    14:10
    Now playing
    James Glattfelder studies complexity: how an interconnected system — say, a swarm of birds — is more than the sum of its parts. And complexity theory, it turns out, can reveal a lot about how the economy works. Glattfelder shares a groundbreaking study of how control flows through the global economy, and how concentration of power in the hands of a shockingly small number leaves us all vulnerable. (Filmed at TEDxZurich.)
  • 2.
    18:29
    Now playing
    Paddy Ashdown claims that we are living in a moment in history where power is changing in ways it never has before. In a spellbinding talk he outlines the three major global shifts that he sees coming. (Filmed at TEDxBrussels.)
  • 3.
    17:51
    Now playing
    Top climate scientist James Hansen tells the story of his involvement in the science of and debate over global climate change. In doing so he outlines the overwhelming evidence that change is happening and why that makes him deeply worried about the future.
  • 4.
    13:45
    Now playing
    When Lesley Hazleton was writing a biography of Muhammad, she was struck by something: The night he received the revelation of the Koran, according to early accounts, his first reaction was doubt, awe, even fear. And yet this experience became the bedrock of his belief. Hazleton calls for a new appreciation of doubt and questioning as the foundation of faith — and an end to fundamentalism of all kinds.
  • 5.
    19:30
    Now playing
    Journalist Misha Glenny spent several years in a courageous investigation of organized crime networks worldwide, which have grown to an estimated 15% of the global economy. From the Russian mafia, to giant drug cartels, his sources include not just intelligence and law enforcement officials but criminal insiders.
  • 6.
    13:41
    Now playing
    The public is losing faith in democracy, says British MP Rory Stewart. Iraq and Afghanistan’s new democracies are deeply corrupt; meanwhile, 84 percent of people in Britain say politics is broken. In this important talk, Stewart sounds a call to action to rebuild democracy, starting with recognizing why democracy is important — not as a tool, but as an ideal.
  • 7.
    16:29
    Now playing
    In tough economic times, our exploratory science programs — from space probes to the LHC — are first to suffer budget cuts. Brian Cox explains how curiosity-driven science pays for itself, powering innovation and a profound appreciation of our existence.
  • 8.
    23:23
    Now playing
    Stewart Brand works on the Clock of the Long Now, a timepiece that counts down the next 10,000 years. It's a beautiful project that asks us to think about the far, far future. Here, he discusses a tricky side problem with the Clock: Where can we put it?
  • 9.
    19:43
    Now playing
    Temple Grandin, diagnosed with autism as a child, talks about how her mind works — sharing her ability to "think in pictures," which helps her solve problems that neurotypical brains might miss. She makes the case that the world needs people on the autism spectrum: visual thinkers, pattern thinkers, verbal thinkers, and all kinds of smart geeky kids.
  • 10.
    16:41
    Now playing
    Given $50 billion to spend, which would you solve first, AIDS or global warming? Danish political scientist Bjorn Lomborg comes up with surprising answers.
  • 11.
    16:48
    Now playing
    Throughout human evolution, multiple versions of humans co-existed. Could we be mid-upgrade now? At TEDxSummit, Juan Enriquez sweeps across time and space to bring us to the present moment — and shows how technology is revealing evidence that suggests rapid evolution may be under way.
  • 12.
    12:06
    Now playing
    In our hyperlinked world, we can know anything, anytime. And this mass enlightenment, says Buddhist scholar Bob Thurman, is our first step toward Buddha nature.