Episodes
Published 08/11/22
With such rampant inequality across the globe, it’s difficult to imagine that in the near future, society could be a place of abundance where everyone has education, healthcare, or housing. But for journalist Aaron Bastani, this improved state of affairs is not off limits; in fact, he believes that, with technology, a better world could be closer than we think. In this episode, Aaron speaks to how and why we should leverage the technological revolution to confront the global challenges of the...
Published 08/11/22
Before labor unions fought for them, society didn’t have weekends as we know them. In the 13th century, the average male peasants in the UK only worked 135 days a year. In a post-pandemic and increasingly virtual world, what is the future of labor? Juliet Schor is an economist and sociologist whose research focuses on work and consumer society. In this episode, she shares her thoughts on modern working practices and how her current research on the four-day work week could help address...
Published 08/04/22
Demis Hassabis is one of tech's most brilliant minds. A chess-playing child prodigy turned researcher and founder of headline-making AI company DeepMind, Demis is thinking through some of the most revolutionary—and in some cases controversial—uses of artificial intelligence. From ​​the development of computer program AlphaGo, which beat out world champions in the board game Go, to making leaps in the research of how proteins fold, Demis is at the helm of the next generation of groundbreaking...
Published 07/28/22
Jennifer Egan is a journalist and writer whose novel “A Visit from the Goon Squad” won both the 2011 Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction. Using a unique format—including a whole chapter told through Powerpoint—Egan nimbly explores the mystery and complexity of human life in the digital age. Her newest book, “The Candy House,” poses similar questions around technology, memory, and authenticity. In this episode, the author talks candidly about her creative...
Published 07/21/22
Garry Kasparov is one of the greatest chess players of all time. He was one of the youngest world champions ever, and had a 20-year streak as the world’s top-rated player. But even though he is known as a champion, he is also particularly famous for losing—against Deep Blue. After the IBM computer beat Kasparov, the Azerbaijan native spent much of his career thinking about games, computers, artificial intelligence, and how to beat our fears regarding technology. Now he’s turned his attention...
Published 07/14/22
The way Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, a theoretical physicist, sees it, Harriet Tubman is the Great American Astronomer. Using the North Star, with no formal training, Harriet Tubman led hundreds of enslaved people to freedom. Chanda is a night sky expert, too. She’s studying the intersections of astrophysics, particle physics, and cosmology, and she’s a leading thinker in understanding dark matter—the invisible particles some postulate could account for most of the matter in the universe. In...
Published 07/07/22
Future forecaster and game designer Jane McGonigal ran a social simulation game in 2008 that had players dealing with the effects of a respiratory pandemic set to happen in the next decade. She wasn’t literally predicting the 2020 pandemic—but she got eerily close. Her game, set in 2019, featured scenarios we're now familiar with (like masking and social distancing), and participant reactions gave her a sense of what the world could—and eventually, did—look like. How did she do it? And what...
Published 06/30/22
It’s official, the TED Interview has a new host! In Chris’s last episode as head of the show, he interviews his successor, bestselling science and technology author Steven Johnson. Two self-described intellectual soulmates, Chris and Steven take a deep dive in discussing where ideas come from, how optimism benefits creative ideation, the complex and even controversial process of discovery, and the beauty of what they call the “adjacent possible.”
Published 06/23/22
The way that our brain perceives the world is profoundly informed by our senses–so what would happen if we could heighten them—or even create a whole NEW sense? In one of his last episodes as host of the show, Chris Anderson kicks off our series on the future of intelligence by interviewing neuroscientist and author David Eagleman. They’ll decode the mysteries of the brain, consider consciousness and what it means to be human, and dig deep into David’s ground-breaking research on how wearable...
Published 06/16/22
What will it take to build a future worth being excited about? Elon Musk believes we already have the tools that will help us create one, but we must take bold action to get there. In conversation with head of TED Chris Anderson, Musk details how the radical new innovations he’s working on—Tesla’s intelligent humanoid robot Optimus, SpaceX’s otherworldly Starship and Neuralink’s brain-machine interfaces—could help maximize the lifespan of humanity and create a world where goods and services...
Published 04/15/22
In an ever expanding world, it can be easy to think of our lives as insignificant. But according to David Deutsch, we all possess one skill that gives each of us infinite reach: our ability to attain knowledge. In the final episode of this season dedicated to making a case for optimism, Chris revisits his interview with the father of quantum computing to explore how knowledge first developed, how it sets us apart and how we can use it to shape a more hopeful future.
Published 06/26/21
From governments to airlines to your favorite eco-friendly clothing brand, tree-planting campaigns are everywhere. Reforesting the planet has become one of the quickest, easiest and most ubiquitous ways to reduce our carbon footprint...but is it actually helping to stop climate change? Ecologist Thomas Crowther speaks with Chris about how planting trees can actually hurt the environment -- unless it's done right. In which case, it can be a pivotal solution in our efforts to end the climate...
Published 06/10/21
We all have to give a presentation at some point in our lives—on a stage, in a conference room, and, these days, on Zoom. So what makes a good speech? In this episode from How To! science writer David Epstein turns the microphone on Chris to find the answer. Chris breaks down some of the most famous talks of all time and solves an unusual challenge from a 6th-grader named Lucy: can he help her prepare for the biggest speech of her young life? This is an episode of How To!, a podcast from...
Published 06/08/21
Some believe our world has changed at a rapid pace in recent decades. From the rise of the internet to the proliferation of startups spinning out inventions, it can certainly seem that way. In this episode, though, economist Tyler Cowen argues that none of this has really transformed the ways we live over the last 50 years. But he contends that now that's changing, as new breakthroughs in science and medicine push us out of the so-called "Great Stagnation" into a new era of meaningful...
Published 06/03/21
What does it take to persevere and succeed, not just in our careers but in all aspects of our lives? For psychologist Angela Duckworth, the answer can be summed up in one concept: grit. She explains the ingredients in grit and the experiences that make one person persist where another gives up — and offers concrete steps to instill grit early in life and sustain it. Can’t get enough TED? Become a member for access to exclusive events, global conversations, and more. Join...
Published 05/27/21
From the strikes that transformed the world's view on climate change to the marches that demanded equity and justice for Black lives, there has been a new awakening of people passionate about creating change. As founder and CEO of Acumen, Jacqueline Novogratz decided early on to dedicate her life's work to doing just that. In this episode, Chris talks to Jacqueline (who he also happens to be married to) about the wisdom she gained from abandoning a lucrative career as a banker to start a...
Published 05/20/21
Before the pandemic struck, young people everywhere abandoned their classrooms and took to the streets. Xiye Bastida was a driving force among these youth climate activists in the U.S. Xiye grew up in Mexico, moved to New York at 13 and started organizing school walk-outs to demand a future unruined by climate change. That movement led to one of the biggest global marches the world has ever seen. In this conversation, Chris and Xiye explore how a group of young people shifted the cultural...
Published 05/13/21
Work as we knew it is undergoing seismic shifts as the pandemic in the U.S. wanes. As some businesses reopen, even people lucky enough to work from home face big questions. What lessons do we take from this past year? How should we lead? How should we talk to each other? How should we even relate to work? Chris turns to Simon Sinek, a thinker and writer on leadership, for some candid guidance in this moment of reinvention. This conversation was recorded in front of a live virtual audience of...
Published 05/06/21
This past year, scientists racing to stop the novel coronavirus delivered vaccines at a pace and scale the world has never seen before. Adrian Hill, director of Oxford University's vaccine research institute, recounts how he and his team developed the AstraZeneca vaccine. He explains why the challenges were as much about logistics as science, and predicts how the rapid creation of all COVID vaccines could change the pace of medical progress—even in realms beyond vaccines. This episode was...
Published 04/22/21
In this new season of the TED Interview, conversations with people who make a case for...optimism. Not some blind, hopeful feeling but the conviction that somewhere out there are solutions that, given the right attention and resources, can guide us out of the dark place we’re in. We share those ideas—and the people propelling them—to light a possible path forward. For the first episode: AI. Will innovation in artificial intelligence drastically improve our lives, or destroy humanity as we...
Published 04/15/21
Today, we're re-sharing a conversation with Christiana Figueres, because we've got a special update for you from TED. On Saturday, October 10, we'll launch Countdown: an exciting new global initiative to champion and accelerate solutions to the climate crisis, turning ideas into action. To get involved, tune in to the global launch which will be live-streamed at youtube.com/ted on October 10 at 11am ET. In 2015, Christiana Figueres brokered the historic Paris Agreement to combat climate...
Published 10/08/20
The youngest winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, Malala Yousafzai has been an international advocate for girls' education since she was 15 years old and was shot by the Taliban for speaking out about girls' education. Now, as a fresh graduate of Oxford University (and job seeking!), she urges us not to forget about the girls who still lack access to a classroom. She describes why learning was crucial to her as a young girl in Pakistan and how the fight for girls' education is inextricably linked...
Published 07/16/20
Born in a charity hospital and now president of the Ford Foundation, Darren Walker has been on both sides of the “inequality equation." He explains the need for the wealthy to acknowledge their complicity in a system that sustains racism and injustice, the importance of nuance in addressing complex systemic issues in the U.S., and the role philanthropy can play in rectifying the social and economic imbalances that disproportionately hurt Black Americans. This virtual conversation is part of...
Published 07/09/20
Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore has been a leader in climate advocacy for over 40 years. He argues that amid the global pandemic and worldwide calls for racial justice, climate action can help create a “clean, prosperous, just future” for all. He also highlights youth’s vital role in pressuring governments and businesses on environmental issues, and the effect of strategies like carbon pricing and nuclear energy on reducing emissions. This virtual conversation is part of TED2020, hosted by...
Published 07/02/20