AIF Blog

March 21, 2018
Rob Reich leads a discussion about morality with David Brooks, Michele Moody-Adams, and Larissa MacFarquhar.Where can we take lessons on how to live morally? Does religion have the answers? Maybe the great philosophers? Or, democracy? With 30-plus years of teaching under her belt, Columbia political philosophy professor Michele Moody-Adams says her own life has taught her, "Philosophical theories and the kind...
March 15, 2018
 Julia Ioffe, foreign policy reporter for The Atlantic, speaks with Russian journalists Galina Timchenko and Alexey Kovalev at the Aspen Ideas Festival. Galina Timchenko was editor in chief at Lenta.ru, the most popular news website in Russia, until she was fired in 2014. After being dismissed, her coworkers issued a statement saying she was sacked to make room for a new Kremlin-controlled editor in chief. They...
March 13, 2018
Students Jahari Shelton and Camille Allen talk about how they speak up for causes they believe in. They spoke at the Aspen Institute's Summit on Inequality and Opportunity. Throughout history, young people have been at the center of activism: the Civil Rights movement, Black Lives Matter, the labor movement, and now gun violence. What barriers do young people have to overcome to get adults to listen? What...
March 08, 2018
Presenters left to right, top row: Vanessa Mason, Ted Koppel, Grace Anne Dorney Koppel, Atul Gawande, Karen DeSalvo, Mark Smolinski Presenters left to right, bottom row: Larry Smarr, Kawanele Asante, Gary Reedy, Jerome Adams, Tollulah Oni, Larry MerloIt’s a busy time behind the scenes of Spotlight Health. Each day, we hear from the world’s most inspiring and knowledgeable leaders in health, medicine, and science,...
March 06, 2018
Journalist Graeme Wood sits alongside psychologist Paul Bloom at the Aspen Ideas Festival in June 2017.Why do people do evil things? We hear from Yale psychologist Paul Bloom and journalist Graeme Wood about the nature of evil. Bloom studies morality in babies, children, and adults. Wood immersed himself in ISIS, readings the terror group’s propaganda and conversing with its members, in order to write the book...
February 27, 2018
Dr. Vivek Murthy speaks with Judy Woodruff at Spotlight Health about gun violence in the United States. In the wake of the tragedy in Parkland, Florida, questions about how to prevent gun violence are resurfacing among politicians, citizens, and public health officials. For years former US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy has called gun deaths a public health crisis. At Spotlight Health in 2017, shortly after a...
February 21, 2018
 In her lengthy career in broadcasting, Pat Mitchell says that two topics were never reported on because of their sheer divisiveness: abortion and peace in the Middle East. Recounting that anecdote at a panel on reproductive health she moderated at Spotlight Health 2017, the veteran media executive, formerly of PBS and CNN (among others), asked her fellow panelists how they approach the touchy subject of...
February 21, 2018
Historian and author Jon Meacham speaks with journalist John Dickerson at the Aspen Ideas Festival in 2017.Our current political time looks most like the 1930s, says historian Jon Meacham. With one of every four American men out of work, populist groups on the right and left were on the rise during the Depression. Citizens were questioning democratic capitalism. "It was a genuine moment where we were...
February 16, 2018
 Journalist Thomas Friedman speaks with MIT's Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee at the Aspen Ideas Festival in 2017. Machines are making decisions humans used to make. The world’s five most valuable companies are tech firms. The Internet is a source of collective wisdom for people seeking solutions to myriad problems. It would be hard to overstate the dramatic impact artificial intelligence and increased...
February 14, 2018
US Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith reads her poetry at Winter Words, an event held by the Institute's literary program Aspen Words. (photo: Nick Tininenko) Last year the US Library of Congress named Tracy K. Smith as the country's Poet Laureate. She follows in the footsteps of notables who have held the position like Billy Collins, Rita Dove, and Juan Felipe Herrera. In January, she read her poetry and...

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