Public Tickets Schedule for 2018

Every year, the Aspen Ideas Festival offers a number of events available to the public by way of individual ticket sales. Ticket sales open at 9 AM (MDT), Friday, June 15. All ticket sales for public events are handled through the Wheeler Opera House box office in person, by phone at (970) 920-5770, and online at aspenshowtix.com.

Downloadable Public Tickets Agenda

At a Glance Public Tickets Agenda

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Lunch Session In Town   Seismic Shifts
North Korea: The Threat Assessment
12:00 pm - 12:50 pm MDT on Tuesday, June 26, 2018
President Obama told incoming President Trump that North Korea would likely be the toughest item on his to-do list, and through the first 500 days of the administration, the prediction has proved correct. Kim Jong Un’s nuclear program has made regional allies, like South Korea and Japan, nervous, and heightened nuclear fears in the United States for the first time since the end of the Cold War. With all the drama over the on-again, off-again summit, where does the thorniest issue on Trump’s agenda go?
St. Regis Hotel Ballroom
Plenary Session   Leadership in a Time of Change
Is Activism Good Business? A Conversation with Patagonia's CEO
5:30 pm - 6:30 pm MDT on Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Clothing and recreational equipment company Patagonia has sued the Trump administration over its resolution to reduce the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monument. CEO Rose Marcario says she’s acting according to the company’s values, and customers buy its products because it protects public lands, develops sustainable fabrics, and invests in sustainable agriculture. And in fact, under Marcario’s leadership, Patagonia has quadrupled revenues, proving that the company’s bold activism is good for business and the planet. Underwritten by PayPal.
Hotel Jerome Ballroom
Plenary Session   Our Imperfect Union
'Intelligence Squared' Debate: Social Media Is Good for Democracy (Live Taping)
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm MDT on Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Platforms like Twitter and Facebook set the stage for a promising digital revolution, providing tools that helped foster global friendships, let new voices be heard, and served as the ultimate democratizing force for information. But critics argue that rather than uniting and informing, social media deepens social and political divisions and erodes trust in the democratic process, violates citizens' privacy, and spreads propaganda. Will the power of social media yet be harnessed and used as an unprecedented force for good in the world? Or do systemic platform flaws pose an irreversible threat to the world’s democratic institutions?
St. Regis Hotel Ballroom
Plenary Session   Our Imperfect Union
'In the Thick' Podcast: Who Gets to be Mad? Race, Gender and the Politics of American Anger (Live Taping)
5:30 pm - 6:30 pm MDT on Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Join a live podcast with Futuro Media’s ‘In The Thick.’ Co-hosts Maria Hinojosa and Julio Ricardo Varela meet up at Aspen Ideas with Dr. Brittney Cooper (aka Professor Crunk), author of Eloquent Rage, and Dr. Michael Kimmel, author of Angry White Men and Healing from Hate. They’ll explore why everyone seems to be mad as hell, how anger has infected and transformed our politics, and why race and gender matter when it comes to rage in the Trump era. But can anger be something other than ugly — perhaps even a source of energy and creativity?
Wheeler Opera House Bar
The Perilous Pursuit of Truth: Investigative Journalists in Hostile Times
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm MDT on Tuesday, June 26, 2018
As of this writing, 28 journalists have been killed in 2018, 262 were imprisoned in 2017, and 58 are currently marked as missing. Every day in countries across the globe, journalists put their lives at risk to expose the truth: truth about human rights, political corruption, drug trafficking, environmental crime. What can journalists (and the rest of us) do to secure their safety — and preserve our collective right to know the truth?
Belly Up Aspen
Evening Session   The Sexes
The Miseducation of Cameron Post (Film & Discussion)
7:30 pm - 9:30 pm MDT on Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Based on the novel by Emily Danforth, The Miseducation of Cameron Post follows Cameron (Chloë Grace Moretz) as she is sent to a gay conversion therapy center after getting caught with another girl in the back seat of a car on prom night. The center is run by Dr. Lydia Marsh (Jennifer Ehle) and her brother, Reverend Rick (John Gallagher Jr.)— himself an example of how those in the program can be “cured.” In the face of intolerance, Cameron meets fellow sinners Jane (Sasha Lane), and Adam (Forrest Goodluck). Together, the teenagers form an unlikely family and fight to survive. Following the film, join Matthew Shurka and Senator Sara Gelser, leading activists against conversion therapy, in conversation with The Atlantic’s Matt Thompson.
Paepcke Auditorium
Evening Session   Viewpoints
Jordan Peterson: From the Barricades of the Culture Wars
8:30 pm - 9:30 pm MDT on Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Jordan Peterson, author of the best-selling 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, may be one of the most famous intellectuals in North America today. He also may be among the most misunderstood. His fans say that he’s saved their lives, and detractors say that he’s the gateway drug to the alt-right. Who is this psychologist-philosopher whom so many of us had never heard of two years ago, and what does he really believe?
St. Regis Hotel Ballroom
Evening Session   Design for the New Normal
Drawdown: We Have the Technology to End Global Warming
8:30 pm - 9:30 pm MDT on Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Author Paul Hawken shares the remarkable story of how a diverse group of researchers from around the world came together to identify, research, and model the most substantive 100 existing solutions to bring us to drawdown — that moment when greenhouse gas levels peak and begin to drop on a year-to-year basis. He shows the path forward that can roll back global warming within 30 years. The uplifting idea here: Humanity has the means at hand right now to stem global warming.
Hotel Jerome Ballroom
Breakfast Talk   Seismic Shifts
The People vs. Democracy
7:50 am - 8:40 am MDT on Wednesday, June 27, 2018
The world is in turmoil. From Italy to Turkey, and from Hungary to the United States, authoritarian populists have seized power. As a result, political scientist and author Yascha Mounk argues that democracy itself may now be at risk. How did we get here, and what do we need to do now? If we are unwilling to give up on either individual rights or the popular will, urgent action is needed. This may be our last chance to save democracy.
Hotel Jerome Ballroom
Breakfast Talk   Our Imperfect Union
The Supreme Court Now: The Most Recent Decisions, the Deciders, and What to Expect Next
7:50 am - 8:40 am MDT on Wednesday, June 27, 2018
From same-sex wedding cakes and voting rights to gerrymandered congressional districts and public unions, the latest Supreme Court term was full of newsmaking decisions, even when they decided not to decide. Join Ideas Festival legal and policy experts for a lively and informative roundup, where they’ll parse the most consequential opinions, emerging trends, and what these decisions tell us about the future of the highest court in the land.
St. Regis Hotel Ballroom
Lunch Session In Town   Staying Human in a High-Tech World
Tech's Immediate and Existential Threat to Humanity
12:00 pm - 12:50 pm MDT on Wednesday, June 27, 2018
George Soros said social media platforms are the largest threat to democracy. Marc Benioff said we should regulate them like tobacco. Why? Every day, platforms like Facebook and YouTube point their supercomputers at two billion people’s minds to capture their attention, and in the process create social harms that include digital addiction, amplifying genocide, political polarization, and election manipulation. As a former design ethicist at Google and founder of the Center for Humane Technology, Tristan Harris will lead a discussion on how we must realign platforms with the greater good.
Hotel Jerome Ballroom
Lunch Session In Town   Our Imperfect Union
With Honor: Can Veterans Help Bridge Our Political Divides?
12:00 pm - 12:50 pm MDT on Wednesday, June 27, 2018
America is at a critical and potentially existential moment. Tribal polarization is at an all-time high. Yet veteran representation in Congress is at an all-time low. Veterans know how to work together and get things done in tough places. Can a surge of next-generation, principled veterans who have pledged to form a cross-partisan coalition win in November, break down divisions, and get Congress working again?
St. Regis Hotel Ballroom
Afternoon of Conversation   Viewpoints
Afternoon of Conversation
3:00 pm - 5:00 pm MDT on Wednesday, June 27, 2018
For our annual signature event in the Benedict Music Tent, the 2018 Aspen Ideas Festival hosts former secretary of state John Kerry in a candid conversation about geopolitics with Andrea Mitchell. Immediately afterward, in collaboration with Theatre Aspen, Ideas Festival presents a live performance by Broadway actors followed by panel discussions examining the historical and social impact that iconic works of theater and the musical stage have had in accentuating critical social issues. Discussions are moderated by Washington Post columnist Peter Marks and include Katie Couric, David Brooks, Maria Hinojosa, Jonathan Capehart, Jelani Cobb, Jose Antonio Vargas, Alisa Solomon, and Nadine Strossen.
Benedict Music Tent
Evening Session   Our Imperfect Union
Very Fine People: Or, How to Stop Worrying and Talk About Race, White Nationalism and Trump in America
7:30 pm - 12:00 am MDT on Wednesday, June 27, 2018
Colin Kaepernick. Charlottesville. Identity politics. Travel ban. Black Lives Matter. Build That Wall. Trump. A decade after the United States elected its first black president and pondered whether it had become a post-racial society, race is a more prominent and intransigent problem than ever. In this dialogue about racism’s complexities and societal implications, we’ll ask: How did we get here? Why does such an artificial category continue to hold sway over our lives, and, most crucially, where can we go from here?
Belly Up Aspen
Evening Session   Moved by Music
Yeethoven: How Kanye West and Beethoven Collide
8:30 pm - 12:00 am MDT on Wednesday, June 27, 2018
On his last two albums, Kanye West's music departed dramatically from traditional pop song structures, launching into a more symphonic approach. Ludwig van Beethoven — similarly controversial in his time — wreaked havoc on existing musical forms and alienated many in the process. Join Yuga Cohler and Stephen “Johan” Feigenbaum as they explore these similarities during a discussion of their orchestral concert Yeethoven, which sold out Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall this past January. An eleven-piece classical ensemble will illustrate their arguments with live musical excerpts.
Hotel Jerome Ballroom
How We Survive Attacks on Journalism
8:30 pm - 12:00 am MDT on Wednesday, June 27, 2018
It is no secret that leaders, at home and abroad, have a problem with journalists. Rants against news organizations and individuals punctuate conversations in Europe and Asia as easily as they do in the United States. How do members of the media navigate their profession in such a climate? Some of the top journalists in the country, representing National Review, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, and USA Today discuss the challenges of staying on top of their reporting at a time when leaders in powerful positions criticize their work.
St. Regis Hotel Ballroom
Breakfast Talk   Viewpoints
Psychology and the Good Life
7:50 am - 8:40 am MDT on Thursday, June 28, 2018
What does the science of psychology say about how to live a happier life? Professor Laurie Santos shares the top insights from her class at Yale, Psychology and the Good Life, the most popular course in the university’s 300-year history.
St. Regis Hotel Ballroom
Breakfast Talk   Our Imperfect Union
What Is It Like to Be Inside the American Immigration System Today?
7:50 am - 8:40 am MDT on Thursday, June 28, 2018
While Congress looks less and less likely to take on any meaningful move on comprehensive immigration reform, hundreds of thousands of people live in limbo every day. Many of them face daily trials, ranging from inconveniences to crippling uncertainty to, in some communities, hatred and outright danger. What’s it like to be at the mercy of our immigration system today?
Hotel Jerome Ballroom
Reddit: The Most Human Place on the Internet?
12:00 pm - 12:50 pm MDT on Thursday, June 28, 2018
Every major social platform has to wrestle with its influence on society and how its leaders’ decisions affect people. But one site that hasn’t made many headlines is Reddit, a network of hundreds of thousands of communities for people to connect across shared interests, in politics, jokes, hobbies, life struggles, and countless other topics. From new content policies to protecting user privacy, Reddit’s approach to human connection sets it apart from its peers. In a wide-ranging discussion, CEO Steve Huffman will discuss how and why Reddit is the most human place on the internet.
St. Regis Hotel Ballroom
Lunch Session In Town   The Genius of Animals
The Whale and the Wind Turbine: Innovation Inspired by Animals
12:00 pm - 12:50 pm MDT on Thursday, June 28, 2018
Luckily for us, a truly sustainable world already exists. Life on Earth had been in perfect balance for 3.8 billion years, and the secrets to that sustainability are still all around us. Biomimicry is the emulation of nature’s genius in design, engineering, even business. Today, biomimics are learning to repel bacteria like a shark, gather fog like a desert beetle, and circulate resources like a forest. The resulting designs are beautiful, functional, and — not surprisingly — sustainable. Biologist Janine Benyus champions the idea that we should take cues from the natural world, because what better mentor can there be?
Hotel Jerome Ballroom

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