Edward Tenner is an independent writer, speaker and editor who analyzes the cultural aspects of technological change.

Why you should listen

When Edward Tenner cites "the advantages of creative mistakes and serendipity," he speaks from the experience of shifting from the fast track to the scenic route after receiving his PhD during the academic retrenchment of the 1970s. After a scientific publishing career leading to a university press executive editorship, he finally decided, with help from the Guggenheim Foundation, to write his own books as a visitor at the Institute for Advanced Study.

Tenner taught one of the first courses on the history of information as a visiting lecturer at Princeton and holds visiting research positions at Rutgers University and in the Smithsonian's Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation. 

Tenner's books -- including Why Things Bite BackOur Own Devices and his 2018 book, The Efficiency Paradox: What Big Data Can't Do -- reflect his faith that sometimes things can go right only by first going very wrong.

Edward Tenner’s TED talks

More news and ideas from Edward Tenner

Live from TED2019

Mystery: Notes from Session 8 of TED2019

April 18, 2019

To kick off day 4 of TED2019, we give you (many more) reasons to get a good night’s sleep, plunge into the massive microbiome in the Earth’s crust — and much, more more. The event: Talks from TED2019, Session 8: Mystery, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and TED’s science curator David Biello When […]

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