Schedule for 2017

Announcing the 2017 Aspen Ideas Festival schedule! Find the session you're looking for by sorting by Program Tracks, Session Date, or search by session name or speaker.  

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Breakout   Caregiving
Care.com Presents: The Unseen Caring Economy
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Our work and family lives are at odds. The contemporary workplace remains constrained by a system designed for lifestyles that emerged after World War II, when far fewer women held jobs and their role as primary caregivers was assumed. In the face of enormous demographic and technological shifts, a caring economy has become critical, yet it is often unseen and devalued. How do we create a care infrastructure that reflects the way we live now? How do we develop the public and workplace caregiving policies that are crucial to a competitive global economy? Research findings about the caring economy from Harvard Business School and PwC Strategy inform the options.
Koch Building, Lauder Room
Breakout   Intersections
Creative Tensions: Creating Connection in a Divided World
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
We live in an era of mounting chronic stress and isolation, and science tells us it is literally killing us. But science also shows that the solution may lie in something disarmingly simple: connection. Can strengthening our connections prevent disease and repair our divisions as a nation? How might we make emotional well-being a national priority at a time when millions are in pain? Creative Tensions is not a panel; it’s a conversation that moves. Participants reveal where they stand on an issue by where they stand in the room. Developed by IDEO and Sundance Institute, Creative Tensions is a fresh approach to group dialogue that encourages openness and inspires empathy.
Kresge Building, Hines Room
Breakout   Spotlight Viewpoints
Follow the Money: Investing in Health
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Health investors may be venture capitalists, willing to take big risks for the possibility of big returns; foundations that use program-related investments to generate a return on capital while supporting their charitable interests; or social entrepreneurs, who hope to do well by doing good. The health investment space is huge — a Google search for the phrase “investing in health care” turns up almost half-a-million responses — but it is also uncertain. What can we learn about the future of health care from the people who are putting money into it? What’s the potential payoff, whether in profits or a healthier world?
Koch Tent
Breakout   Caregiving
The Jobs of Tomorrow: Upskilling Care
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
The health care industry is one of the largest employers in the United States, and the need for skilled health workers has grown to crisis proportions as the population ages and lives longer. How can we provide career ladders for lower-level workers, such as home health care aides, and create decent jobs with benefits and growth potential? Hear from experts who are reimagining health care jobs and piloting new ways to value workers and provide the highest quality care.
Buckminster Fuller Dome
Breakout   Spotlight Viewpoints
America's Biopharmaceutical Companies Present: The New Era of Medicine: A Turning Point for Patients and the Health Care System
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
As we enter a New Era of Medicine, learn what this means for patients and the health care system, and how these advances will change the way doctors and hospitals are treating patients. Panelists will explore how we can make sure that patients can access cutting-edge treatments, while also determining how we can thoughtfully make reforms to advance payment and delivery systems that are as innovative as these new treatments.
Koch Building, Booz Allen Hamilton Room
Misc   Intersections
Explore Project HEAL Art Exhibition
11:30 am - 11:50 am MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Created by IDEAS xLab, Creative Agents of Change Foundation, and the Center for Art + Health Innovation, Project HEAL (Health. Equity. Art. Learning.) is at the vanguard of transdisciplinary social innovation—training artists and cultural producers as a new prevention workforce at the intersection of policy, civic engagement, and population health. Examples of artist interventions include using sculpture to visualize trauma and time poverty, driving policy change through poetry, and leveraging data science and environmental justice in the transformation of a middle school into a cultural hub for health-in-all policies innovation.
Paepcke Lobby
Lunch Session on Campus   Caregiving
How Social Capital Influences Well-Being
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Social capital “is the network and scaffolding, seen and unseen, that allows determined individuals to succeed,” writes the Aspen Institute’s Raj Vinnakota. “It eases barriers to entry and provides tremendous leverage and ‘insider status’ for those who have it.” And for those who do not? They are increasingly shut off from opportunity and likely to have dramatically worse health outcomes. Today, the gap between those with and without social capital is perhaps the largest in history. How do we broaden access to social capital that promotes family and community bonding and build bridges to networks with economic and cultural advantages to share?
Doerr-Hosier Center, Kaufman Room
Lunch Session on Campus   Caregiving
Care + Work: A Shared Win for Business and Employees
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
The responsibility of caregiving can turn a working person’s life upside down. Two-thirds of workers who also care for a family member or friend experience some kind of job-related upheaval, according to AARP and the National Alliance of Caregivers. With associated productivity losses costing some $34 billion every year, the problem hits business on its bottom line. Some forward-looking companies are beginning to do things differently as they discover that flexible workplace policies reduce absenteeism, boost morale, and serve as a valuable employee recruitment tool. How do we make the workplace friendlier to caregivers? Should paid leave become national policy?
Aspen Meadows Restaurant
Lunch Session off Campus   Moonshots
Is Precision Medicine the Cure-All?
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Individual genetic makeup and the genetic signature of diseases vary tremendously, but the goal of matching them with custom-tailored treatment remains in its infancy. Precision medicine, which uses the powerful tools of molecular biology, genomics, and bioinformatics, promises great advances. Much of the early focus of the field is on cancer, where researchers are studying tumor heterogeneity, therapeutic responses, and the patient characteristics that influence their interactions. Diabetes, infectious diseases, and genetic disorders are other auspicious candidates for precision medicine. Where is the science headed, and how close can it bring us to a disease-free world? (Underwritten by America’s Biopharmaceutical Companies)
Hotel Jerome Ballroom
Lunch Session on Campus   Intersections
Quelling Violent Extremism with Public Health Tools
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
The rise of radicalization and violent extremism is a worldwide threat that seems to defy military solutions and cannot be countered only by the vigilance of law enforcement. A body of scholarship and experience suggests that the tools of public health may have an underutilized role to play in confronting terrorism by helping to identify at-risk individuals, building resilient communities hostile to extremism, offering nonviolent forums for expressing grievances, and strengthening mental health services. Can health-centered interventions really change hearts and minds and turn potentially violent people in other directions?
Doerr-Hosier Center, McNulty Room
Lunch Session off Campus   Med School
Sex and Cancer
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Hear Saketh Guntupalli talk about his new book, Sex and Cancer: Intimacy, Romance and Love After Diagnosis and Treatment. The seeds of this work were planted at Spotlight Health two years ago, when Guntupalli participated in a conversation about flibanserin, then a newly approved drug nicknamed “Viagra for women.” A gynecologic oncologist, Guntupalli realized the drug might be of interest to women with cancer, and launched a clinical trial in that population soon afterwards. Now, he’s written a book that takes an honest look at the physical and psychological components of intimacy, what cancer can do to them, and how a loving union can thrive after a diagnosis.
Limelight Hotel
Luncheon Roundtable  
What is the Future of Medicine and Medical Care?
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Marble Garden Tent
Luncheon Roundtable  
Supporting Working Family Caregivers
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Marble Garden Tent
Luncheon Roundtable  
Work-Life Balance: Strategies to Promote Resilience and Prevent Burnout
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Many high-achievers believe they can do it all. They tend to work exceptionally long hours, take on an exceedingly heavy workload, and put enormous pressure on themselves to excel-all of which make them ripe for burnout. Burnout leads to physical and emotional exhaustion, cynicism and detachment, and feelings of ineffectiveness and lack of accomplishment. Clinicians who experience burnout are associated with lower quality care and medical errors. An alarming number are quitting the profession or committing suicide. This session will highlight strategies used by high-achieving young physicians to maintain better work-life balance, amplify resiliency and wellness, and promote career fulfillment. Both the American Hospital Association and the American Osteopathic Association are driving several initiatives to spur clinician resilience and well-being so that we improve care for the nation.
Marble Garden Tent
Luncheon Roundtable  
Innovating to Save Lives: Social Entrepreneurs in Global Health
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Marble Garden Tent
Luncheon Roundtable  
What is Giving Cancer Patients Most Hope?
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Marble Garden Tent
Luncheon Roundtable  
Are Organizations Citizens Too?
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Marble Garden Tent
Luncheon Roundtable  
Continuing the Conversation: Brain Health
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Marble Garden Tent
Deep Dive   The Brain
Deep Dive: The Opioid Tsunami
1:15 pm - 2:45 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
It’s been called the most perilous drug crisis ever. In the United States, the epicenter of the opioid epidemic, overdose deaths have quadrupled since 1999, killing 91 people every day. Pharmaceutical pain relief is an essential clinical tool, but with physicians writing some 240 million opioid prescriptions to Americans every year, the potential for addicition is enormous. Excerpts from the new HBO Documentary, Warning: This Drug May Kill You, are shown at this session, and make vivid the anguishing impact on families and communities. The bright spot here is that addiction is increasingly recognized as a medical, not a criminal problem, and new treatments are on the horizon. How do we protect the population from misusing opioids?
Koch Tent
Deep Dive   Moonshots
Deep Dive: Preventing Pandemics
1:15 pm - 2:45 pm MDT on Friday, June 23, 2017
Infectious diseases represent one of the greatest threats to global health and security. The failures of the Ebola crisis demonstrated that we remain woefully unprepared, but they also served as a wake-up call at the highest levels of policymaking across nations. The twelve-country Commission on a Global Health Risk Framework for the Future has urgently recommended an international commitment to prevent, diagnose, and treat infectious diseases by galvanizing adequate financial resources, strengthening international leadership, reinforcing the public health infrastructure, and building up the scientific armory. How can a divided world work together to stop the next outbreak? Could the effort become a long-awaited opportunity to reach common ground?
Doerr-Hosier Center, McNulty Room

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