AIF Blog - Society

March 28, 2017
Dan Gilbert, psychology professor at Harvard, discusses the future and happiness at the Aspen Ideas Festival.Renowned Harvard psychologist Dan Gilbert describes the foibles of imagination and illusions of foresight that cause each of us to misconceive our tomorrows and misestimate our satisfactions. Vividly bringing to life the latest scientific research in psychology, cognitive neuroscience, philosophy, and...
March 14, 2017
Einstein biographer and Aspen Institute President Walter Isaacson speaks at the Aspen Ideas Festival.Albert Einstein was no Einstein when he was a kid. He was slow to talk and was even dubbed “the dopey one.” But, Einstein said, slow development gave him time to wonder about things most people don’t spend time on and as a result, his imagination flourished. In this rebroadcast, Aspen Institute...
March 07, 2017
Mitch Landrieu, Randi Weingarten, and David Gergen speak at the Aspen Ideas Festival in June 2016.Everything—from the country’s place in the world to the social contract between citizens, government, and the private sector—seems to be knotted in hard, uncompromising debates. In this episode, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, former Republican National Committee Chair Michael Steele, American...
February 21, 2017
Helen Fisher, chief scientific advisor for Match.com, speaks at the Aspen Ideas Festival.Thanks to technology, we are more connected than ever—digitally. But at what cost? How have technologies, like online dating sites and apps like Tinder, changed attitudes and behaviors? How do we choose a partner and stay interested when we have an almost infinite world of choices at our fingertips? Will marriage become a...
February 16, 2017
 David Rubenstein, National Constitution Center Trustee and co-CEO of The Carlyle Group, gives a history lesson on the drafting of the Bill of Rights at the Aspen Ideas Festival. Congress ratified the Bill of Rights 225 years ago, on December 15, 1791. The document was a last-minute recommendation at the Constitutional Convention four years earlier. David Rubenstein, trustee at the National Constitution Center, says...
February 07, 2017
Harvard President Drew Gilpin Faust speaks with Bryan Stevenson, director of the Equal Justice Initiative and author of "Just Mercy", at the Aspen Ideas Festival in June 2016.As the US continues to grapple with issues of race, history is proving to be an invaluable tool to underscore and discuss uncomfortable truths still governing the dynamics of race. How can history help us face and overcome troubling...
January 17, 2017
Those who study human behavior have learned that simply by encouraging—or “nudging”—individuals toward the right decisions for themselves, dramatic improvements can be made. Cultural commentator David Brooks and Cass Sunstein, legal scholar and the founder and director of the Program on Behavioral Economics and Public Policy at Harvard Law School, discuss the power of “nudge” and...
January 11, 2017
David Rothkopf, CEO and editor of the FP Group, speaks with Editor-in-Chief of The Atlantic Jeffrey Goldberg at the Aspen Ideas Festival. As President Barack Obama prepares to step down, we look back on his accomplishments and shortcomings. The talks below examine how Obama tackled race as the nation’s first African American president, his work to deal with the recession, create the Affordable Care Act,...
January 03, 2017
What actually happens to the brain when we meditate? Published studies have documented the many physical and mental health benefits of meditation, including decreased pain, better immune function, less anxiety and depression, a heightened sense of well-being, and greater happiness and emotional self-control. Imaging studies show, with meditation there’s increased activity in brain regions associated with...
December 28, 2016
Jonathan Capehart of the Washington Post interviews US Attorney General Loretta Lynch at Aspen Ideas 2016.At the 12th annual Aspen Ideas Festival, hundreds of the world’s most exciting medical experts, politicians, business leaders, journalists, academics, and artists flooded the Institute’s Aspen campus to discuss the ideas that are changing the planet. Read below for highlights.Vice President Joe Biden and the...

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