At the crossroads of life and livelihood, scholar D-L Stewart invites us into scenes from his own life as he resists and reflects on the dehumanizing narratives that shape the Black trans experience in the US. With each word of his captivating and poetic dissection, Stewart emphasizes the magnitude and urgency of the rallying cry "Black trans lives matter" -- and calls on others to uphold that truth, too.
An artwork's color or composition can pull you in -- and put you on the path to having important and difficult conversations, says artist Titus Kaphar. In this stunning talk, he reflects on his artistic evolution and takes us on a tour of his career -- from "The Jerome Project," which draws on religious icons to examine the US criminal justice system, to "From a Tropical Space," a haunting body of work that centers around Black mothers whose children have disappeared. Kaphar also shares the idea behind NXTHVN, an arts incubator and community for young people in his hometown.
Bill Gates talks best (and worst) case scenarios for the coronavirus pandemic in the months ahead, explaining the challenges of reducing virus transmission, providing an update on promising vaccine candidates, offering his thoughts on reopening and even taking a moment to address conspiracy theories circulating about himself. Stay tuned for his critical call to fellow philanthropists to ramp up their action, ambition and awareness to create a better world for all. (This virtual conversation, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson, was recorded June 29, 2020.)
When your future is uncertain, how do you keep moving forward? In this courageous talk, oncologist and cancer survivor Shekinah Elmore shares how she embraced life after a rare genetic diagnosis -- and explains why she believes doctors have a duty to help their patients learn to live with radical uncertainty.
Around the world, Indigenous food cultures vanish because of industrialized agriculture and a shifting, Western-influenced concept of the ideal diet. Food researcher Aparna Pallavi explores why once-essential culinary traditions disappear from people's lives and memories almost without notice -- and serves up a subtle solution to revitalize our connection to the foods we eat.
"Life doesn't go from A to B -- it's messy," says sailing legend Tracy Edwards. In this inspiring talk, she tells how she went from teenage misfit to skipper of the first all-female crew in the toughest race on the seas -- and how she now helps young people around the world achieve their dreams, too.
Developing a vaccine usually takes five to 10 years, costs about a billion dollars and has a failure rate of 93 percent. Under the pressure of the coronavirus pandemic, scientists are being asked to speed that timeline up to 12 to 18 months, says Jerome Kim, director general of the International Vaccine Institute. How are things going? Kim updates us on the varied field of vaccine candidates and discusses the challenges of making sure the one that works gets distributed to the whole world. (This virtual conversation, hosted by head of TED David Biello, was recorded June 15, 2020.)
Cities are engines of culture, commerce, knowledge and community, but they're also centers of inequality and poverty. As the world rebuilds from the coronavirus pandemic, can we transform cities into bastions of equity and sustainability? Architect and educator Vishaan Chakrabarti discusses a new urban agenda that provides equitable housing, health care and transportation for all -- and helps build cities rooted in our desire to connect at a human level. "We need a new narrative of generosity, not austerity," he says. (This virtual conversation, hosted by TED arts and design curator Chee Pearlman and head of curation Helen Walters, was recorded June 10, 2020.)
"I was the first woman president of an African nation, and I do believe more countries ought to try that," says H.E. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Nobel laureate and former president of Liberia. Telling the story of how Liberian women helped rebuild their country after years of civil war, Sirleaf discusses why gender equality is essential to peace and prosperity -- and shares her plan to uplift a generation of women prepared to take leadership positions and catalyze social change.
How can we disagree with one another, respectfully and productively? In this thoughtful talk, team builder Matt Trombley reflects on "agonism" -- the tendency to take a rigid stance on issues -- and shares why finding aspects of agreement can be the first step in resolving conflict. "When you can find even the smallest bit of common ground with somebody, it allows you to understand the beautiful wonder and complexity and majesty of the other person," he says.
The coronavirus brought much of the world to a standstill, dropping carbon emissions by five percent. Al Gore says keeping those rates down is now up to us. In this illuminating interview, he discusses how the steadily declining cost of wind and solar energy will transform manufacturing, transportation and agriculture, offer a cheaper alternative to fossil fuels and nuclear energy and create millions of new jobs. Stay tuned for a lively debate about geoengineering and hear Gore's thoughts about how humanity can create a clean, prosperous future through a focused global effort and a generation of young people committed to change. (This virtual conversation, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson, was recorded June 23, 2020.)
Conventional vaccine testing is a slow, years-long process. As thousands of people continue to die each day from COVID-19, bioethicist Nir Eyal proposes a radical idea that could dramatically accelerate the vaccine development timeline: "human challenge trials," in which scientists would deliberately expose volunteers to the virus to more quickly determine a vaccine's efficacy. (This virtual conversation, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson, was recorded June 15, 2020.)
Legendary hip-hop producer Swizz Beatz is on a mission to revolutionize the way artists do business. In this glorious talk, he shares some of the ways he's helping fellow creatives thrive, including a roving art fair that gives artists 100 percent of their sales, a new commission system for galleries to fund living visual artists and Verzuz, online musical celebrations that bring joy to fans -- and sales to musicians. "If we're not protecting the arts, we're not protecting our future," he says.
Offering a vision of Afghanistan that goes beyond what's often depicted in the media, President Ashraf Ghani shares his thoughts on peacemaking, the true cost of war, the nation's COVID-19 response strategy and the sweeping economic and social reforms happening throughout the country. "The ultimate goal is a sovereign, democratic, united Afghanistan at peace with itself and the world," he says. (This virtual conversation, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson, was recorded June 16, 2020.)
Colonialism remains an inescapable blight on the present, lingering in the toxic, internalized mythologies and stereotypes that have outlived the regimes that created them, says historian Farish Ahmad-Noor. Examining why these prejudices and narratives persist (and sometimes thrive), he suggests a multidisciplinary approach to reject cultural obsessions with romanticized history and prevent this nostalgia from perpetuating past oppressions.
Can technology create a democracy that's fast, fair ... and even fun? Digital minister Audrey Tang shares how Taiwan avoided a COVID-19 shutdown in early 2020 through innovations like developing apps to map mask availability, crowdsourcing ideas that could become laws and creating a "humor over rumor" campaign to combat disinformation with comedy. (This virtual conversation, hosted by TED science curator David Biello and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers, was recorded June 1, 2020.)
Out of the more than 70 million displaced people worldwide, only three percent have access to higher education. The Global Education Movement (GEM) is on a mission to change that with the first large-scale initiative of its kind to help refugee learners get bachelor's degrees and create pathways toward employment. Hear from students and the program's executive director, Chrystina Russell, about how GEM's flexible, competency-based model sets graduates up for success and empowerment wherever they are.
Our brains create categories to make sense of the world, recognize patterns and make quick decisions. But this ability to categorize also exacts a heavy toll in the form of unconscious bias. In this powerful talk, psychologist Jennifer L. Eberhardt explores how our biases unfairly target Black people at all levels of society -- from schools and social media to policing and criminal justice -- and discusses how creating points of friction can help us actively interrupt and address this troubling problem.
At the intersection of precision medicine and vaccinology lies a revolutionary scientific pursuit: personalized vaccines. Infectious disease specialist Ofer Levy introduces this promising medical approach, in which tailored inoculations will enable effective immunization of the most vulnerable among us, including the young and elderly, and shares how we're now venturing into a new era of sustaining and supporting human life. (This talk contains graphic medical imagery.)
Investigative journalist Katherine Eban set out to report on a seemingly straightforward question: Are generic drugs really identical to their brand-name counterparts? The answer sparked a decade of interviews, meetings with whistleblowers, on-the-ground reporting across four continents and digging into confidential FDA documents. In this alarming talk, she takes us inside overseas manufacturing plants and exposes the fraud behind many low-cost generic medicines.
Developing countries need strong alliances between the public and private sectors to rebuild after COVID-19, says Achim Steiner, administrator for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). From building virus tracking systems to supporting clean energy projects and expanding health care, hear how the UNDP is creating partnerships between states and the financial, communications, technology and insurance sectors to rebuild stronger, greener economies post-pandemic. (This virtual conversation, hosted by political commentator Sally Kohn and TED global curator Bruno Giussani, was recorded June 8, 2020.)
Athletes train their bodies to run faster, jump higher, throw farther -- so why don't they train their minds, too? Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson talks about the power of "neutral thinking," which helps him thrive under pressure (both on the field and off) -- and shows how you can use this mindset to make the right moves in your own life.
Everyone experiences loss, but how do you cope with the tough moments that follow? Resilience researcher Lucy Hone shares three hard-won strategies for developing the capacity to brave adversity, overcome struggle and face whatever may come head-on with fortitude and grace.
Who are you? To answer this question, artist Shantell Martin followed her pen. In this brilliantly visual talk featuring her signature freestyle line work -- drawn across everything from the screens of Times Square to the bodies of New York City Ballet dancers -- Martin shares how she found freedom and a new perspective through art. See how drawing can connect your hand to your heart and deepen your connection with the world.
The digital platforms you and your family use every day -- from online games to education apps and medical portals -- may be collecting and selling your children's data, says anthropologist Veronica Barassi. Sharing her eye-opening research, Barassi urges parents to look twice at digital terms and conditions instead of blindly accepting them -- and to demand protections that ensure their kids' data doesn't skew their future.
After the devastating rebel invasion of Freetown in 1999 and the Ebola epidemic in 2014, Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr, mayor of the city, refused to be paralyzed by her frustration with the status quo. Instead, she used her anger as a catalyst for action. In this inspiring talk, she shares how she transformed her city by taking the risks necessary to bring about dramatic change -- and shows how you can find power in your dissatisfaction.
There is no such thing as being "not racist," says author and historian Ibram X. Kendi. In this vital conversation, he defines the transformative concept of antiracism to help us more clearly recognize, take responsibility for and reject prejudices in our public policies, workplaces and personal beliefs. Learn how you can actively use this awareness to uproot injustice and inequality in the world -- and replace it with love. (This virtual interview, hosted by TED's current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers and speaker development curator Cloe Shasha, was recorded June 9, 2020.)
Nigel Topping has a cool job: he's the UK's High Level Climate Action Champion for COP26, the UN's climate change conference taking place in 2021. In this wide-ranging interview, Topping discusses his work with scientists, businesses and cities to drive action on climate change and get the world committed to net zero emissions by 2050. He also explains why he thinks the COVID-19 pandemic could accelerate the transition to a green economy, creating jobs that will last and building a cleaner world for us all. (This virtual conversation, hosted by TED global curator Bruno Giussani and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers, was recorded May 26, 2020.)
Flags are one of the simplest yet most powerful pieces of design ever conceived. They can make us swell with pride, burn with hatred -- and even inspire people to die or kill in their name, says vexillologist Michael Green. Take a brief walk through history as Green explores the symbolic fervor behind flags that unify and divide, inviting us to imagine a future where we can come together under one collective identity: humanity.
"We need to defund the budgets of police departments. It's the only way we're going to take power back," says Anthony D. Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Calling for allies to get involved in the efforts to dismantle systemic racism, Romero explains why police reform isn't enough anymore -- and shows why it's time to take money from militarized law enforcement and reinvest it in the community. (This video, excerpted from a panel discussion featuring Dr. Phillip Atiba Goff, Rashad Robinson and Dr. Bernice King, was recorded June 3, 2020. Watch the full discussion at go.ted.com/endingracism)
To cultivate a society grounded in equity and love, we must uproot systems of oppression and violence towards Black communities, says Dr. Bernice Albertine King, community builder and daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. In a time of mourning and protest, King calls for a revolution of values, allies that engage and a world where anger is channeled into social and economic change. "Freedom is never really won. You earn it and win it in every generation," King says. "Every generation is called to this freedom struggle." (This video, excerpted from a panel featuring Dr. Phillip Atiba Goff, Rashad Robinson and Anthony D. Romero, was recorded June 3, 2020. Watch the full discussion at go.ted.com/endingracism)
The presence and visibility of a movement can often lead us to believe that progress is inevitable. But building power and changing the system requires more than conversations and retweets, says Rashad Robinson, the president of Color Of Change. To create material change in the racist systems that enable and perpetuate violence against Black communities, Robinson shares how we can translate the energy of global protests into specific demands, actions and laws -- and hold those in power accountable to them. "This is the time for white allies to stand up in new ways, to do the type of allyship that truly dismantles structures, not just provides charity," Robinson says. "You can't sing our songs, use our hashtags and march in our marches if you are on the other end supporting the structures that put us in harm's way, that literally kill us." (This video, excerpted from a panel featuring Dr. Phillip Atiba Goff, Dr. Bernice King and Anthony D. Romero, was recorded June 3, 2020. Watch the full discussion at go.ted.com/endingracism)
The bill has come due for the unpaid debts the United States owes its Black residents, says Dr. Phillip Atiba Goff, CEO of the Center for Policing Equity (CPE). But we're not going to get to where we need to go just by reforming law enforcement. In addition to the work that CPE is known for -- working with police departments to use their own data to improve relationships with the communities they serve -- Goff and his team are encouraging cities to take money from police budgets and instead invest it directly in public resources for the community. (This video, excerpted from a panel featuring Rashad Robinson, Dr. Bernice King and Anthony D. Romero, was recorded June 3, 2020. Watch the full discussion at go.ted.com/endingracism)
Marcelo Mena, the former environment minister of Chile, is on a mission to create a zero-emission economy in his country by 2050. In a conversation about climate action, he discusses how the COVID-19 pandemic is changing Chile's ambitious plan to tackle climate change -- and explains why the green recovery needs to be powered by both political leaders and citizens alike. (This virtual conversation, hosted by TED current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers and global curator Bruno Giussani, was recorded on May 26, 2020.)
No matter your industry, you've experienced drama at work. In this funny and all-too-relatable talk, community leader Anastasia Penright outlines five steps you can follow to better coexist with your coworkers and focus on what's really important.
In a time of mourning and anger over the ongoing violence inflicted on Black communities by police in the US and the lack of accountability from national leadership, what is the path forward? Sharing urgent insights into this historic moment, Dr. Phillip Atiba Goff, Rashad Robinson, Dr. Bernice King and Anthony D. Romero discuss dismantling the systems of oppression and racism responsible for tragedies like the murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd and far too many others -- and explore how the US can start to live up to its ideals. (This discussion, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers, was recorded on June 3, 2020.)
Karen DeSalvo, the chief health officer at Google, explains the partnership between big tech and public health in slowing the spread of COVID-19 -- and discusses a new contact tracing technology recently rolled out by Google and Apple that aims to ease the burden on health workers and provide scientists critical time to create a vaccine. (This virtual conversation, hosted by current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers and head of TED Chris Anderson, was recorded on May 27, 2020.)
For the poor and vulnerable, the health impacts of climate change are already here, says physician Cheryl Holder. Unseasonably hot temperatures, disease-carrying mosquitoes and climate gentrification threaten those with existing health conditions, while wealthier people move to higher ground. In an impassioned talk, Holder proposes impactful ways clinicians can protect their patients from climate-related health challenges -- and calls on doctors, politicians and others to build a care system that incorporates economic and social justice.
Contact tracing -- the process of identifying people who may have been exposed to the coronavirus in order to slow its spread -- is a fundamental tool in the fight against COVID-19. How can we scale this critical work across the entire United States? Joia Mukherjee, chief medical officer of Partners in Health, discusses how her team is working with public health agencies to ramp up contact tracing for the country's most vulnerable communities -- and shows why it will take a compassionate approach to be truly effective. (This ambitious plan is part of The Audacious Project, TED's initiative to inspire and fund global change. The conversation, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers, was recorded May 27, 2020.)
What makes you speak up -- or not -- when you see something you know is wrong? Memory scientist Julia Shaw explains the psychology of those who witness workplace discrimination and harassment -- and shares actionable steps companies can take to support and amplify their voices.
Giving up control of your finances -- voluntarily or otherwise -- can leave you powerless and, in some cases, confined to a cycle of abuse. In this personal talk, accountant Estelle Gibson shares her own story of recovering from financial dependence and provides actionable advice to empower others who desire the freedom that comes with being responsible for your own money.
Capitalism needs an upgrade, says PayPal CEO Dan Schulman, and it starts with paying people enough to actually invest in their futures. He discusses why companies need to cultivate trust to recover and rebuild after the COVID-19 pandemic -- and how we can use this defining moment to create a more inclusive, ethical economy. (This virtual conversation, hosted by TED business curator Corey Hajim and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers, was recorded on May 19, 2020.)
A mysterious tattoo on her forearm was all that linked Sara Jones, adopted as a child by white parents, to her South Korean origins. Searching for her birth family taught her that transracial adoption stories often frame new lives abroad as strokes of luck that call for endless gratitude, obscuring a far more complex reality. Through her experience of loss and discovery, Jones offers guidance on what adoptive parents can do to protect their children's unique cultural and personal narratives.
As you age, you gradually lose the ability to refocus your eyes -- a phenomenon as old as humanity itself -- leading to a reliance on bifocals, contacts and procedures like LASIK surgery. Electrical engineer Nitish Padmanaban offers a glimpse of cutting-edge tech that's truly a sight for sore eyes: dynamic, autofocusing lenses that track your sight and adjust to what you see, both near and far.
Growing up means facing new challenges -- but for some kids, uncertain situations lead to anxiety that parents often seek to soothe. Psychologist Anne Marie Albano explains how constantly rushing to fix a child's problems can perpetuate a lifelong cycle of dependence and resentment -- and shares why a healthy dose of risk helps kids cultivate lasting confidence.
The coronavirus pandemic won't be the last crisis to test public health systems worldwide, says physician and health policy leader Georges C. Benjamin. He details what's needed to lead us out of the pandemic and prevent future ones -- including a robust governmental health entity equipped with updated technology and well-trained staff -- and explains how citizens, businesses and political leaders can do their part to put public health first. (This virtual conversation, hosted by science curator David Biello and head of TED Chris Anderson, was recorded on May 20, 2020.)
How can we return to work without spurring a second surge of coronavirus infection? Biologist Uri Alon shares a thought-provoking strategy: four days at work followed by 10 days of lockdown, a cycle that would exploit a weakness in the virus's biology and potentially cut its reproductive rate to a manageable level. Learn more about this approach -- which has already been adopted by both companies and countries -- and how it could be a key to reopening the economy responsibly. (This virtual conversation, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and science curator David Biello, was recorded on May 20, 2020.)
Earth, humanity and nature are inextricably interconnected. To restore us all back to health, we need to "rewild" the world, says environmental activist Kristine Tompkins. Tracing her life from Patagonia CEO to passionate conservationist, she shares how she has helped to establish national parks across millions of acres of land (and sea) in South America -- and discusses the critical role we all have to play to heal the planet. "We have a common destiny," she says. "We can flourish or we can suffer, but we're going to be doing it together."
Veterans in the United States take their own lives at an alarming rate. Suggesting new ways to prioritize mental health in the military, veterans advocate Charles P. Smith offers a data-driven plan to help prevent suicide and ensure service members get proper care before, during and after active duty.
By incorporating art and creativity into elder care settings, gerontologist Anne Basting helps families reconnect with loved ones who have dementia. In this moving talk, she shares how asking "beautiful questions" -- questions that don't have a right or wrong answer -- opens up a shared path of discovery, imagination and wonder. "If we can infuse creativity into care, caregivers can invite a partner into meaning-making," Basting says. "In that moment, care, which is so often associated with loss, can become generative."
The ocean plays host to a peculiar party of wild, marine sex life that's perhaps quirkier (and kinkier) than you can fathom. But is human behavior interrupting these raunchy reproductive acts? Take a deep dive with marine biologist Marah J. Hardt to discover what exactly goes down under the sea -- and why your own wellness depends on the healthy sex lives of fish.
The coronavirus pandemic shattered the global economy. To put the pieces back together, we need to make sure money is going to the countries that need it the most -- and that we rebuild financial systems that are resilient to shocks, says Kristalina Georgieva, managing director of the International Monetary Fund. She takes us inside the massive economic stimulus efforts leading the world toward recovery and renewal and discusses what it will take for countries to emerge from this "great transformation" even stronger than before. (This virtual conversation, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers, was recorded on May 18, 2020.)
Trauma and PTSD rewire your brain -- especially your memory -- and can unearth destructive emotional responses when stirred. Could we eliminate these triggers without erasing the memories themselves? Enter neurologist Amy Milton's mind-blowing, memory-editing clinical research poised to defuse the damaging effects of painful remembered experiences and offer a potential path toward better mental health.
When you stop comparing yourself to others, you can accomplish great things, says wheelchair athlete Dean Furness. He shares how, after losing the use of his legs in an accident, he discovered a powerful new mindset focused on redefining his "personal average" and getting better little by little.
You speak far more languages than you realize, says Poet Ali. In a profound talk, he reveals how the idea of "language" goes far beyond a lexicon of words, communicating universal experiences like love, laughter and loneliness -- and serving as a portal to cultures, feelings and thoughts that unite us all.
After seeing the conditions in which children were held at a detention center on the US-Mexico border, Sister Norma Pimentel established a humanitarian respite center in Texas where people can get clean clothing, a warm shower and a hot meal. In this powerful talk, Sister Pimentel discusses her lifelong work restoring human dignity at the border -- and calls on us all to put aside prejudice and lead with compassion.
How do doctors in the emergency room stay calm and focused amidst the chaos? Drawing on years of experience, ER doctor Darria Long shares a straightforward framework to help you take back control and feel less overwhelmed when life starts to get "crazy busy."
Nearly half a million people in the US are in jail right now without being convicted of a crime, simply because they can't come up with the money to pay cash bail. To try and fix this system, public defender and activist Robin Steinberg asked a straightforward question: What if we paid bail for them? In conversation with TED Radio Hour host Manoush Zomorodi, Steinberg shares how her nonprofit The Bail Project -- which uses a revolving fund to post bail for those who can't afford it -- is scaling up their efforts across the country and rolling out a new community-based model to fight mass incarceration. (This ambitious plan is part of the Audacious Project, TED's initiative to inspire and fund global change.)
School can be rife with stress, anxiety, panic attacks and even burnout -- but there's often no formal policy for students who need to prioritize their well-being. Hailey Hardcastle explains why schools should offer mental health days and allow students time to practice emotional hygiene without stigma. Follow along to learn how she and a team of fellow teens transformed their advocacy into law.
How can we stop the next pandemic before it starts? Disease researchers Pardis Sabeti and Christian Happi introduce Sentinel, an early warning system that detects and tracks viral threats in real time -- and could help stop them before they spread. Learn more about the cutting-edge technology that powers the system and how the Sentinel team is helping scientists and health workers during the coronavirus pandemic. (This ambitious plan is part of the Audacious Project, TED's initiative to inspire and fund global change.)
To combat COVID-19, countries have enforced city-wide shutdowns, stay-at-home orders and mask mandates -- but the reaction (and adherence) to these rules has differed markedly in the East and West. In conversation with TED's head of curation Helen Walters, writer and publisher Huang Hung sheds light on how Chinese and American cultural values shaped their responses to the outbreak -- and provides perspective on why everyone needs to come together to end the pandemic. (Recorded April 16, 2020)
Privacy isn't dead, but face surveillance technology might kill it, says civil rights advocate Kade Crockford. In an eye-opening talk, Kade outlines the startling reasons why this invasive technology -- powered by often-flawed facial recognition databases that track people without their knowledge -- poses unprecedented threats to your fundamental rights. Learn what can be done to ban government use before it's too late.
By some estimates, work-related stress drains the US economy of nearly 300 billion dollars a year -- and it can hurt your productivity and personal health too, says wellness advocate Rob Cooke. He shares some strategies to help put your mental, physical and emotional well-being back at the forefront.
Health care workers are under more stress than ever before. How can they protect their mental health while handling new and complex pressures? TED Fellow Laurel Braitman shows how writing and sharing personal stories helps physicians, nurses, medical students and other health professionals connect more meaningfully with themselves and others -- and make their emotional well-being a priority.
Before the coronavirus pandemic, bioengineer Jim Collins and his team combined the power of AI with synthetic biology in an effort to combat a different looming crisis: antibiotic-resistant superbugs. Collins explains how they pivoted their efforts to begin developing a series of tools and antiviral compounds to help fight COVID-19 -- and shares their plan to discover seven new classes of antibiotics over the next seven years. (This ambitious plan is part of The Audacious Project, TED's initiative to inspire and fund global change.)
What if we could harness the ocean's movement to protect coastal communities from rising sea levels? Designer and TED Fellow Skylar Tibbits shows how his lab is creating a dynamic, adaptable system of underwater structures that uses energy from ocean waves to accumulate sand and restore eroding shorelines -- working with the forces of nature to build rather than destroy.
Many countries have an active, centuries-old law that allows government agencies to take your things -- your house, your car, your business -- without ever convicting you of a crime. Law researcher Dick M. Carpenter II exposes how this practice of civil forfeiture threatens your rights and creates a huge monetary incentive for law enforcement to pocket your possessions -- and he lays out a path to end "policing for profit" once and for all.
Examining the facts and figures of the coronavirus outbreak, epidemiologist Larry Brilliant evaluates the global response in a candid interview with head of TED Chris Anderson. Brilliant lays out a clear plan to end the pandemic -- and shows why, to achieve it, we'll have to work together across political and geographical divides. "This is not the zombie apocalypse; this is not a mass extinction event," he says. "We need to be the best version of ourselves." (Recorded April 22, 2020)
When it comes to big life problems, we often stand at a crossroads: either believe we're powerless against great change, or we rise to meet the challenge. In an urgent call to action, political strategist Tom Rivett-Carnac makes the case for adopting a mindset of "stubborn optimism" to confront climate change -- or whatever crisis may come our way -- and sustain the action needed to build a regenerative future. As he puts it: "Stubborn optimism can fill our lives with meaning and purpose."
If you had to explain to a newborn what it means to be a human being living on Earth in the 21st century, what would you say? Visual artist Oliver Jeffers put his answer in a letter to his son, sharing pearls of wisdom on existence and the diversity of life. He offers observations of the "beautiful, fragile drama of human civilization" in this poetic talk paired with his original illustrations and animations.
Recounting her story of finding opportunity and stability in the US, Elizabeth Camarillo Gutierrez examines the flaws in narratives that simplify and idealize the immigrant experience -- and shares hard-earned wisdom on the best way to help those around us. "Our world is one that flourishes when different voices come together," she says.
How does your genetic inheritance, culture and history influence your health? Biological anthropologist Lara Durgavich discusses the field of evolutionary medicine as a gateway to understanding the quirks of human biology -- including why a genetic mutation can sometimes have beneficial effects -- and emphasizes how unraveling your own evolutionary past could glean insights into your current and future health.
When Shaka Senghor and Ebony Roberts ended their relationship, they made a pact to protect their son from its fallout. What resulted was a poetic meditation on what it means to raise a child together, yet apart. In this moving and deeply personal talk, Senghor and Roberts share their approach to co-parenting -- an equal, active partnership that rolls with the punches and revels in the delights of guiding their child through the world with thought and intention.
Racism makes our economy worse -- and not just in ways that harm people of color, says public policy expert Heather C. McGhee. From her research and travels across the US, McGhee shares startling insights into how racism fuels bad policymaking and drains our economic potential -- and offers a crucial rethink on what we can do to create a more prosperous nation for all. "Our fates are linked," she says. "It costs us so much to remain divided."
Curious how stuff works? Do a hands-on experiment at home, says physicist Nadya Mason. She shows how you can demystify the world around you by tapping into your scientific curiosity -- and performs a few onstage experiments of her own using magnets, dollar bills, dry ice and more.
Some biological structures are so small that scientists can't see them with even the most powerful microscopes. That's where molecular animator and TED Fellow Janet Iwasa gets creative. Explore vast, unseen molecular worlds as she shares mesmerizing animations that imagine how they might work.
Did you know that one of the most notorious poisons is also a key ingredient for life as we know it? Join space chemist Karin Öberg and learn how she scans the universe in search of this paradoxical chemical using ALMA, the world's largest radio telescope, to detect hotbeds of molecular activity and the formation of life-sustaining planets.
The coronavirus pandemic is more global, dramatic and unusual than any crisis we've seen in a long time, says journalist Fareed Zakaria. Listen as he shares his perspective on how we can recover from the economic fallout, why certain countries were able to avoid major outbreaks and what this might mean for the balance of global power. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded April 9, 2020)
The coronavirus pandemic put India's population of 1.3 billion into an extreme and sudden lockdown. Social entrepreneur Gayathri Vasudevan explains how the situation is impacting the country's migrant workers, who are stuck far from home with limited access to food and shelter, and calls for an overhaul of India's social infrastructure in order to get people the essentials they need right now. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded April 9, 2020)
"I'm a capitalist. I believe in the system. I believe you can increase the size of the pie and you could divide it well," says Ray Dalio, founder of Bridgewater Associates. He offers wide-ranging insight and advice on how we might recover from the global economic fallout of the coronavirus crisis -- and use it as an opportunity to reform the systems that help grow our economy. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and business curator Corey Hajim. Recorded April 8, 2020)
Looking to put your skills to use to fight the pandemic? Consider joining The Global Hack, a virtual hackathon designed to rapidly develop solutions to the coronavirus crisis. Designer and technologist Marko Russiver shares the motivation behind a movement looking to help people build post-pandemic resilience. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of curation Helen Walters. Recorded April 8, 2020)
To understand what makes marriages work, we need to talk about why they sometimes end, says family law professor Jeannie Suk Gersen. Follow along as she lays out three ways that thinking about marital decisions through the lens of divorce can help you better navigate togetherness from the beginning.
The coronavirus pandemic is unlike anything we've ever seen in health care, says emergency physician Esther Choo. Sharing insights into how health workers are responding to the outbreak, she explains what makes this public health emergency different from others -- and provides a few simple things you can do to help. Watch to the end to hear about Choo's work deploying mobile ICUs across the United States as hospitals start to reach capacity. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers and head of curation Helen Walters. Recorded April 7, 2020)
Indigenous languages across North America are under threat of extinction due to the colonial legacy of cultural erasure, says linguist Lindsay Morcom. Highlighting grassroots strategies developed by the Anishinaabe people of Canada to revive their language and community, Morcom makes a passionate case for enacting policies that could protect Indigenous heritage for generations to come.
As COVID-19 continues to spread, the world is facing two existential threats at once: a public health emergency and an economic crisis. Political theorist Danielle Allen describes how we can ethically and democratically address both problems by scaling up "smart testing," which would track positive cases with peer-to-peer software on people's cell phones -- so we can end the pandemic and get back to work. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and business curator Corey Hajim. Recorded April 6, 2020)
There's a simple and powerful way to confront the world's most pressing crises, says women's rights activist Yifat Susskind: think like a mother. As she puts it: "When you think like a mother, you prioritize the needs of the many, not the whims of the few." Follow along as she shares moving stories of people around the world who embody this mindset -- and shows how it can also help you see beyond suffering and act to build a better world.
More barriers exist now than at the end of World War II, says designer Alexandra Auer. And when you erect one wall, you unwittingly create a second -- an "us" versus "them" partition in the mind that compromises our collective safety. With intriguing results from her social design project focused on two elementary schools separated by a fence, Auer encourages us to dismantle our biases and regain perspective on all the things we have in common.
If you're feeling anxious or fearful during the coronavirus pandemic, you're not alone. Offering hope and understanding, author Elizabeth Gilbert reflects on how to stay present, accept grief when it comes and trust in the strength of the human spirit. "Resilience is our shared genetic inheritance," she says. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and head of curation Helen Walters. Recorded April 2, 2020)
"Autism is not a disease; it's just another way of thinking," says Ethan Lisi. Offering a glimpse into the way he experiences the world, Lisi breaks down misleading stereotypes about autism, shares insights into common behaviors like stimming and masking and promotes a more inclusive understanding of the spectrum.
A good night's sleep has perhaps never been more important. Sharing wisdom and debunking myths, sleep scientist Matt Walker discusses the impact of sleep on mind and body -- from unleashing your creative powers to boosting your memory and immune health -- and details practices you can start (and stop) doing tonight to get some rest. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded April 1, 2020)
What can past pandemics teach us how to tackle the current one? Tracing the history of contagions from cholera to Ebola and beyond, science journalist Sonia Shah explains why we're more vulnerable to outbreaks now than ever before, what we can do to minimize the spread of coronavirus and how to prevent future pandemics. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by science curator David Biello and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded March 31, 2020)
Monarch butterflies are dying at an alarming rate around the world -- a looming extinction that could also put human life at risk. But we have just the thing to help save these insects, says author Mary Ellen Hannibal: citizen scientists. Learn how these grassroots volunteers are playing a crucial role in measuring and rescuing the monarch's dwindling population -- and how you could join their ranks to help protect nature. (You'll be in good company: Charles Darwin was a citizen scientist!)
Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks offers thoughts on how we can navigate the coronavirus pandemic with courage, hope and empathy. With wisdom and clarity, he speaks on leadership, fear, death, hope and how we could use this moment to build a more just world. Watch for a special, impromptu prayer about halfway through the conversation. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and head of curation Helen Walters. Recorded March 30, 2020)
Pardons, commutations and bankruptcy laws are all tools of forgiveness within the US legal system. Are we using them frequently enough, and with fairness? Law professor Martha Minow outlines how these merciful measures can reinforce racial and economic inequality -- and makes the case for creating a system of restorative justice that focuses on accountability and reconciliation rather than punishment.
Author Priya Parker shares tools for creating meaningful connections with friends, family and coworkers during the coronavirus pandemic -- and shows how we can take advantage of gatherings that are unique to this moment of social distancing. "We don't necessarily need to gather more," she says. "We need to gather better." (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded March 27, 2020)
From Hong Kong, South China Morning Post CEO Gary Liu tracks China's response to the coronavirus pandemic -- from the initial outbreak in Wuhan to the shutdown of Hubei province and the containment measures taken across its major cities. Sharing insights into how the culture in places like Hong Kong and South Korea contributed to fast action against the virus, Liu identifies lessons people across the world can use to stop its spread. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded March 25, 2020)
When will the coronavirus vaccine be ready? Epidemiologist Seth Berkley (head of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance) takes us inside the effort to create a vaccine for COVID-19. With clarity and urgency, he explains what makes it so challenging to develop, when we can expect it to be rolled out at scale and why we'll need global collaboration to get it done. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded March 26, 2020)
To tackle a problem as large as climate change, we need both science and Indigenous wisdom, says environmental activist Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim. In this engaging talk, she shares how her nomadic community in Chad is working closely with scientists to restore endangered ecosystems -- and offers lessons on how to create more resilient communities.
What's your passion? Social entrepreneur Noeline Kirabo reflects on her work helping out-of-school young people in Uganda turn their passions into profitable businesses -- and shares the two questions you can ask yourself to begin doing the same.
Philanthropist and Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates offers insights into the COVID-19 pandemic, discussing why testing and self-isolation are essential, which medical advancements show promise and what it will take for the world to endure this crisis. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded March 24, 2020)
The world is more connected than ever, but some communities are still cut off from vital resources like electricity and health care. In this solution-oriented talk, activist Johanna Figueira discusses her work with Code for Venezuela -- a platform that gathers technologists to address Venezuela's needs for information and medical supplies -- and shares ideas for how it could be used as a model to help other communities in need.
"Life's beauty is inseparable from its fragility," says psychologist Susan David. In a special virtual conversation, she shares wisdom on how to build resilience, courage and joy in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. Responding to listeners' questions from across the globe, she offers ways to talk to your children about their emotions, keep focus during the crisis and help those working on the front lines. (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded March 23, 2020)
To work safely, self-driving cars must avoid obstacles -- including those just out of sight. And for this to happen, we need technology that sees better than humans can, says electrical engineer David Lindell. Buckle up for a quick, groundbreaking tech demo as Lindell explains the significant and versatile potential of a high-speed camera that can detect objects hidden around corners.
The common thinking on biological sex goes like this: females have two X chromosomes in their cells, while males have one X and one Y. In this myth-busting talk, science writer and podcaster Molly Webster shows why the so-called "sex chromosomes" are more complicated than this simple definition -- and reveals why we should think about them differently.
"You don't predict the future -- you imagine the future," says sci-fi writer Charlie Jane Anders. In a talk that's part dream, part research-based extrapolation, she takes us on a wild, speculative tour of the delights and challenges the future may hold -- and shows how dreaming up weird, futuristic possibilities empowers us to construct a better tomorrow.
What if you could repay loans through volunteering and mentorship instead of money? Activist Angie Murimirwa shares how a game-changing economic tool known as "social interest" is reinvigorating sub-Saharan communities once trapped in cycles of poverty. Join her as she explains how this approach to lending is creating opportunities for thousands of African women and girls -- and shows why this model can be replicated anywhere with lasting effects.
Farmers keep us fed and our economies stable, but in the US they're retiring faster than they're being replaced. Take a crash course in agricultural policy with Eric Sannerud to see why this problem can't be solved by simply buying from your local farmer's market -- and learn how you can use your vote to create a better future for farmers.
How comfortable are you with robots taking over your life? Covering a wide range of potential applications -- from the mundane (robot house cleaner) to the mischievous (robot sex partner) to the downright macabre (uploading your brain to live on after death) -- technology strategist Lucy Farey-Jones shares data-backed evidence of how our willingness to accept AI may be radically changing.
Where did the new coronavirus originate, how did it spread so fast -- and what's next? Sharing insights from the outbreak, global health expert and TED Fellow Alanna Shaikh traces the spread of COVID-19, discusses why travel restrictions aren't effective and highlights the medical changes needed worldwide to prepare for the next pandemic. "We need to make sure that every country in the world has the capacity to identify new diseases and treat them," she says. (Recorded March 5, 2020. Update: the CDC is now calling for everyone to wear face coverings in public.)
As the threat of COVID-19 continues, infectious disease expert and TED Fellow Adam Kucharski answers five key questions about the novel coronavirus, providing necessary perspective on its transmission, how governments have responded and what might need to change about our social behavior to end the pandemic. (This video is excerpted from a 70-minute interview between Kucharski and head of TED Chris Anderson. Listen to the full interview at http://go.ted.com/adamkucharski. Recorded March 11, 2020)
Having your period is exhausting -- and for many people across the world, menstruation is even more challenging because of stigmas and difficulty getting basic hygiene supplies, says social activist Ananya Grover. In this uplifting, actionable talk, she shares how "Pravahkriti," her campaign to spread period positivity, creatively engages with everyone to promote menstrual health, raise awareness and break taboos around periods.
The climate crisis is too vast and complicated to solve with a silver bullet, says author David Wallace-Wells. What we need is a shift in how we live. Follow along as he lays out some of the dramatic actions we could take to build a livable, prosperous world in the age of global warming.
Have you ever wondered how your ears work? In this delightful and fascinating talk, biophysicist Jim Hudspeth demonstrates the wonderfully simple yet astonishingly powerful mechanics of hair cells, the microscopic powerhouses that make hearing possible -- and explains how, when it's really quiet, your ears will begin to beam out a spectrum of sounds unique to you.
Historian Elizabeth Stordeur Pryor leads a thoughtful and history-backed examination of one of the most divisive words in the English language: the N-word. Drawing from personal experience, she explains how reflecting on our points of encounter with the word can help promote productive discussions and, ultimately, create a framework that reshapes education around the complicated history of racism in the US.
The ocean is a naturally noisy place full of singing whales, grunting fish, snapping shrimp, cracking ice, wind and rain. But human-made sounds -- from ship engines to oil drilling -- have become an acute threat to marine life, says science journalist Nicola Jones. Watch (and listen) as she discusses the strange things that happen to underwater creatures in the face of ocean noise pollution -- and shares straightforward ways we can dial down the sound to see almost immediate impacts.
Many of the symptoms of menopause -- hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, memory lapses, depression and anxiety -- start in the brain. How exactly does menopause impact cognitive health? Sharing groundbreaking findings from her research, neuroscientist Lisa Mosconi reveals how decreasing hormonal levels affect brain aging -- and shares simple lifestyle changes you can make to support lifelong brain health.
What if the government ran more like Silicon Valley? Engineer Matt Cutts shares why he decided to leave Google (where he worked for nearly 17 years) for a career in the US government -- and makes the case that if you really want to make an impact, go where your help is needed most.
In much of the world, gender is viewed as binary: man or woman, each assigned characteristics and traits designated by biological sex. But that's not the case everywhere, says France Villarta. In a talk that's part cultural love letter, part history lesson, he details the legacy of gender fluidity and inclusivity in his native Philippines -- and emphasizes the universal beauty of all people, regardless of society's labels.
In 1996, Agnes Binagwaho returned home to Rwanda in the aftermath of its genocide. She considered leaving amid the overwhelming devastation, but women in her community motivated her to stay and help rebuild -- and she's glad she did. In an inspiring talk, Binagwaho reflects on her work as Rwanda's former Minister of Health and discusses her new women's education initiative for the country, which strives to create one of the greatest levels of gender equality worldwide.
Neuroscientist Kay M. Tye investigates how your brain gives rise to complex emotional states like depression, anxiety or loneliness. From the cutting edge of science, she shares her latest findings -- including the development of a tool that uses light to activate specific neurons and create dramatic behavioral changes in mice. Learn how these discoveries could change the way you think about your mind -- and possibly uncover effective treatments for mental disorders.
Ask any deep space navigator like Jill Seubert what makes steering a spacecraft difficult, and they'll tell you it's all about the timing; a split-second can decide a mission's success or failure. So what do you do when a spacecraft is bad at telling time? You get it a clock -- an atomic clock, to be precise. Let Seubert whisk you away with the revolutionary potential of a future where you could receive stellar, GPS-like directions -- no matter where you are in the universe.
In a talk that could change how you see things, designer and artist Jiabao Li introduces her conceptual projects that expose the inherent bias of digital media. From a helmet that makes you "allergic" to the color red to a browser plug-in that filters the internet in an unexpected way, Li's creations uncover how technology mediates the way we perceive reality.
What happens if you get infected with the coronavirus? Who's most at risk? How can you protect yourself? Public health expert David Heymann, who led the global response to the SARS outbreak in 2003, shares the latest findings about COVID-19 and what the future may hold. (Recorded February 27, 2020)
Nearly 1,800 newsrooms have shuttered across the US since 2004, leaving many communities unseen, unheard and in the dark. In this passionate talk and rallying cry, journalist Chuck Plunkett explains why he rebelled against his employer to raise awareness for an industry under threat of extinction -- and makes the case for local news as an essential part of any healthy democracy.
It's normal to feel anxious or overwhelmed by climate change, says psychologist Renée Lertzman. Can we turn those feelings into something productive? In an affirming talk, Lertzman discusses the emotional effects of climate change and offers insights on how psychology can help us discover both the creativity and resilience needed to act on environmental issues.
"Full access to a person's phone is the next best thing to full access to a person's mind," says cybersecurity expert Eva Galperin. In an urgent talk, she describes the emerging danger of stalkerware -- software designed to spy on someone by gaining access to their devices without their knowledge -- and calls on antivirus companies to recognize these programs as malicious in order to discourage abusers and protect victims.
Sometimes, small things make a huge impact. After studying how bees in urban environments can survive by navigating small land patches, ecologist Amanda Schochet was inspired to build MICRO, a network of portable science museums the size of vending machines. Learn how these tiny museums are being deployed in libraries, community centers, transit hubs and elsewhere to increase public access to science.
Corruption is a constant threat in Kenya, says social entrepreneur Wanjira Mathai -- and to stop it there (or anywhere else), we need to intervene early. Following the legacy of her mother, political activist and Nobel Prize recipient Wangari Maathai, Mathai shares three strategies to uproot a culture of corruption by teaching children and young people about leadership, purpose and integrity.
"Complete silence is very addictive," says Rebecca Knill, a writer who has cochlear implants that enable her to hear. In this funny, insightful talk, she explores the evolution of assistive listening technology, the outdated way people still respond to deafness and how we can shift our cultural understanding of ability to build a more inclusive world. "Technology has come so far," Knill says. "Our mindset just needs to catch up."
Equity expert Sara Sanford offers a certified playbook that helps companies go beyond good intentions, using a data-driven standard to actively counter unconscious bias and foster gender equity -- by changing how workplaces operate, not just how people think.
Business management in China is changing, says consultant Fang Ruan. Learn how Chinese entrepreneurs -- long guided by Confucianism's emphasis on authority and regulation -- are now looking to Taoist philosophy for a new, dynamic leadership style that believes things spontaneously transform and naturally achieve perfection when they're supported, not controlled.
More than a billion people worldwide, mostly children, do not have a legal identity. In many countries, this means they can't get access to vital services like health care and education, says legal identity expert Kristen Wenz. She discusses why this problem is one of the greatest human rights violations of our time -- and shares five strategies to ensure everyone can get registered and protected.
In this talk and tech demo, filmmaker Diego Prilusky introduces the next chapter in moviemaking: volumetric video, a 360-degree experience powered by hundreds of cameras that capture light and motion from every angle. Check out how this technology creates a new type of immersive storytelling -- and catch Prilusky's reshoot of an iconic dance number from "Grease" captured with volumetric video.
The world's most valuable tech companies profit from the personal data you generate. So why aren't you getting paid for it? In this eye-opening talk, entrepreneur and technologist Jennifer Zhu Scott makes the case for private data ownership -- which would empower you to donate, destroy or sell your data as you see fit -- and shows how this growing movement could put power (and cash) back into the hands of people.
Air pollution knows no borders -- even in your own body, says public health expert María Neira. In this startling talk, she describes how the microscopic particles and chemicals you breathe affect all your major organs (including your brain) and calls on both the public and those in power to take action to stop the sources of pollution.
"Co-parenting" isn't a buzzword -- it's a way of showing up for your family openly, consistently and lovingly, says storyteller and father Joel Leon. In this moving talk, he challenges all parents to play an equal, active role in their children's daily lives, even in a world that often places the weight of sacrifice on mothers alone. Leon encourages nuanced conversations about parenting and reminds us that being a parent isn't a responsibility -- it's an opportunity.
In this hilarious, whirlwind tour of the last four billion years of evolution, paleontologist and TED Fellow Lauren Sallan introduces us to some of the wildly diverse animals that roamed the prehistoric planet (from sharks with wings to galloping crocodiles and long-necked rhinos) and shows why paleontology is about way more than dinosaurs.
When you think of fangirls, what comes to mind: large swaths of fandom (usually for a boyband) whose feelings culminate in tears and joyful screams? Perhaps you grimace or roll your eyes at the thought. In this fun, lively talk, playwright Yve Blake asks us to reevaluate our reaction to the misunderstood passion and power of fangirls, emphasizing why we should all embrace our own unbridled enthusiasm.
"Branding is the profound manifestation of the human spirit," says designer and podcaster Debbie Millman. In a historical odyssey that she illustrated herself, Millman traces the evolution of branding, from cave paintings to flags to beer labels and beyond. She explores the power of symbols to unite people, beginning with prehistoric communities who used them to represent beliefs and identify affiliations to modern companies that adopt logos and trademarks to market their products -- and explains how branding reflects the state of humanity.
A casual reverse-image search unleashed a nightmarish reality on Noelle Martin when she discovered her face edited into pornographic materials across the internet. Join Martin as she recounts years battling shadowy online figures to reclaim her identity, narrative and peace of mind -- and learn how she helped change Australian law. (This talk contains mature content.)
To save the achoque -- an exotic (and adorable) salamander found in a lake in northern Mexico -- scientists teamed up with an unexpected research partner: a group of nuns called the Sisters of the Immaculate Health. In this delightful talk, science journalist Victoria Gill shares the story of how this unusual collaboration saved the achoque from extinction -- and demonstrates how local and indigenous people could hold the secret to saving our planet's weird, wonderful and most threatened species.
"To make a difference in the life of a child ... I made the commitment to tell my personal story," says educator Lisa Godwin. In this moving talk, she shares her experience of overcoming childhood trauma with the quiet, unwavering support of a teacher and school counselor -- and shows how educators can help students and families navigate hardships by sharing their own stories.
The growth of online marketplaces like Uber, Airbnb and Amazon can sometimes threaten local businesses such as taxis, hotels and retail shops by taking away jobs or reducing income to the community. But it doesn't have to be this way, says strategy consultant Amane Dannouni. Pointing to examples like Gojek (Indonesia's Uber for motorbikes) and Jumia (Africa's version of Amazon), he explains how some online marketplaces make deliberate trade-offs to include, rather than replace, existing players in local economies -- benefiting everyone in the long run.
TED Fellow Alicia Eggert takes us on a visual tour of her work -- from a giant sculpture on an uninhabited island in Maine to an installation that inflates only when people hold hands to complete an electric current. Her work explores the power of art to inspire wonder and foster hope in dark times. As she puts it: "A brighter, more sustainable, more equitable future depends first on our ability to imagine it."
In a tech-obsessed culture, it can be difficult to build genuine relationships with people, especially in the workplace. Robert Reffkin shares his tips and tricks for establishing authentic connections on the job.
Quitting your job can be scary, but sometimes it's the best thing you can do for your career, says entrepreneur Chieh Huang. He shares how to know when it's time to move on -- and what can you do to prepare.
Taking control of our personal finances can feel overwhelming -- but it doesn't have to be. Thasunda Duckett shares how to minimize shame around money and start having honest conversations about how to save.
Humans have been coming up with ways to give constructive criticism for centuries, but somehow we're still pretty terrible at it. Cognitive psychologist LeeAnn Renninger shares a scientifically proven method for giving effective feedback.
"You can't just flip a switch when you step into the office and turn your emotions off. Feeling feelings is part of being human," says author and illustrator Liz Fosslien. She shares why selective vulnerability is the key to bringing your authentic self to work.
Our obsession with productivity -- to-do lists, life hacks, morning routines -- is making us less productive, says digital anthropologist Rahaf Harfoush. She explains why we need to redesign our workday around creativity -- not just efficiency.
In a world of endless reviews and options, it's easy to become paralyzed by indecision. Investor and writer Patrick McGinnis shares the dangers of "FOBO" -- the fear of better options -- and how to overcome it.
Imagine waking in the middle of the night to an elephant ripping the roof from your house in search of food. This is a reality in some communities in Africa where, as wild spaces shrink, people and elephants are competing for space and resources like never before. In this engaging talk, zoologist Lucy King shares her solution to the rising conflict: fences made from beehives that keep elephants at bay while also helping farmers establish new livelihoods.
Almost a billion people worldwide live in informal communities and slums, often without basic infrastructure like clean water, toilets or adequate roads. Urban planner Smruti Jukur Johari breaks down myths about these communities and shares examples of simple, common-sense solutions that arise when governments and architects work together with the residents -- instead of around them.
Tribology: it's a funny-sounding word you might not have heard before, but it could change how you see and interact with the physical world, says mechanical engineer Jennifer Vail. Offering lessons from tribology -- the study of friction and wear -- Vail describes the surprisingly varied ways it impacts everyday life and how it could help us make a better world.
As a medical clown, TED Resident Matthew A. Wilson takes the old adage that laughter is the best medicine very seriously. In this heartwarming talk, he shares glimpses of how clowning around can help patients (and medical staff) navigate stressful situations -- with no side effects.
Take a trip down the microworld as roboticists Paul McEuen and Marc Miskin explain how they design and mass-produce microrobots the size of a single cell, powered by atomically thin legs -- and show how these machines could one day be "piloted" to battle crop diseases or study your brain at the level of individual neurons.
Black history taught in US schools is often watered-down, riddled with inaccuracies and stripped of its context and rich, full-bodied historical figures. Equipped with the real story of Rosa Parks, professor David Ikard highlights how making the realities of race more benign and digestible harms us all -- and emphasizes the power and importance of historical accuracy.
"A political cartoon is a barometer of freedom," says Rayma Suprani, who was exiled from her native Venezuela for publishing work critical of the government. "That's why dictators hate cartoonists." In a talk illustrated with highlights from a career spent railing against totalitarianism, Suprani explores how cartoons hold a mirror to society and reveal hidden truths -- and discusses why she keeps drawing even when it comes at a high personal cost. (In Spanish with consecutive English translation)
Parasitic worms date back thousands of years, causing diseases that limit human potential. But today, effective treatment against them requires just a few pills, taken once or twice a year. With 1.7 billion people at risk of infection, Ellen Agler and her team at the END Fund are imagining a world without disease caused by worms. Learn about how they're seeking to lower treatment costs, amplify prevention, support governments and nurture local leadership. This ambitious plan is a part of The Audacious Project, TED's initiative to inspire and fund global change. (Voiced by Ama Adi-Dako)
Here's a paradox: as companies try to streamline their businesses by using artificial intelligence to make critical decisions, they may inadvertently make themselves less efficient. Business technologist Sylvain Duranton advocates for a "Human plus AI" approach -- using AI systems alongside humans, not instead of them -- and shares the specific formula companies can adopt to successfully employ AI while keeping humans in the loop.
Using low-cost virtual reality, education activist Jessica Ochoa Hendrix helps bring science to life in schools across the US. In this quick talk, she explains how a VR experience she developed invites students to explore underwater ecosystems as if they're marine biologists -- and envision themselves in other careers they might not have otherwise imagined.
Some common life-saving medicines, such as insulin, are made of proteins so large and fragile that they need to be injected instead of ingested as pills. But a new generation of medicine -- made from smaller, more durable proteins known as peptides -- is on its way. In a quick, informative talk, molecular engineer and TED Fellow Christopher Bahl explains how he's using computational design to create powerful peptides that could one day neutralize the flu, protect against botulism poisoning and even stop cancer cells from growing.
Holocaust survivor Werner Reich recounts his harrowing adolescence as a prisoner transported between concentration camps -- and shares how a small, kind act can inspire a lifetime of compassion. "If you ever know somebody who needs help, if you know somebody who is scared, be kind to them," he says. "If you do it at the right time, it will enter their heart, and it will be with them wherever they go, forever."
When the ocean changes, the planet changes -- and it all starts with microbes, says biological oceanographer Angelicque White. Backed by decades of data, White shares how scientists use these ancient microorganisms as a crucial barometer of ocean health -- and how we might rejuvenate them as marine temperatures steadily rise.
If you: do laundry, are (or have been) pregnant, tidy up, shop for your household or do similar labor, then by GDP standards, you're unproductive. In this visionary talk, economist Marilyn Waring seeks to correct the failures of this narrow-minded system, detailing why we deserve a better way to measure growth that values not just our own livelihood but the planet's as well.
When we witness something amazing, many of us instinctively pull out our phones and snap pictures. Is this obsession with photographing everything impacting our experiences? In a meditative talk, Erin Sullivan reflects on how being more intentional with her lens enhanced her ability to enjoy the moment -- and could help you do the same, too.
There's no shortage of resources to help people change their health behaviors -- but far too often, these resources aren't accessible in underserved communities, says physician Priscilla Pemu. Enter "culturally congruent coaching," a program Pemu and her team developed to help patients with chronic diseases monitor their health with the assistance of a coach from their community. Learn more about how this approach transcends language and cultural barriers -- and could potentially transform health care in America.
By 2050, the global population is projected to reach 9.8 billion. How are we going to feed everyone? Investment-banker-turned-farmer Stuart Oda points to indoor vertical farming: growing food on tiered racks in a controlled, climate-proof environment. In a forward-looking talk, he explains how this method can maintain better safety standards, save money, use less water and help us provide for future generations.
"If DNA is the blueprint of life, enzymes are the laborers that carry out its instructions," says chemical biologist Adam Garske. In this fun talk and demo, he shows how scientists can now edit and design enzymes for specific functions -- to help treat diseases like diabetes, create energy-efficient laundry detergent and even capture greenhouse gases -- and performs his own enzyme experiment onstage.
"It shouldn't be an act of feminism to know how your body works," says gynecologist and author Jen Gunter. In this revelatory talk, she explains how menstrual shame silences and represses -- and leads to the spread of harmful misinformation and the mismanagement of pain. Declaring the era of the menstrual taboos over, she delivers a clear, much-needed lesson on the once-mysterious mechanics of the uterus.
You are more likely to die violently if you live in a middle-income democracy with high levels of inequality and political polarization than if you live in a country at war, says democracy advisor Rachel Kleinfeld. This historical shift in the nature of violence presents an opportunity for everyday voters to act as a great force for change in their unbalanced societies. In this eye-opening talk, Kleinfeld unravels the causes of violence and offers a path to security for the world's deadliest countries.
Between 2006 and 2016, the number of drug patents granted in the United States doubled -- but not because there was an explosion in invention or innovation. Drug companies have learned how to game the system, accumulating patents not for new medicines but for small changes to existing ones, which allows them to build monopolies, block competition and drive prices up. Health justice lawyer Priti Krishtel sheds light on how we've lost sight of the patent system's original intent -- and offers five reforms for a redesign that would serve the public and save lives.
Given the option, few would choose to buy products that harm the earth -- yet it's nearly impossible to know how most consumer goods are made or where they're sourced from. That's about to change, says supply chain innovator Markus Mutz. He shares how he used blockchain technology to track Patagonian toothfish on their journey from ocean to dinner plate -- and proved it's possible to offer consumers a product they can trust.
The United States can create a more humane immigration system; in fact, it's been done before, says policy analyst David J. Bier. Pointing to the historical success of the US guest worker program, which allows foreign workers to legally enter and work in the country, Bier shows why expanding the program to Central Americans could alleviate the border crisis and provide new opportunities for immigrants.
In this deeply charming and humorous talk, DJ and self-professed pirate Tom Nash meditates on how facing adversity due to disability invited patience, ambition and pragmatism into his life in enlightening, unexpected ways. "We all have unique weaknesses," he says. "If we're honest about what they are, we can learn how to best take advantage of them."
What if we could "grow" clothes from microbes, furniture from living organisms and buildings with exteriors like tree bark? TED Fellow Suzanne Lee shares exciting developments from the field of biofabrication and shows how it could help us replace major sources of waste, like plastic and cement, with sustainable and eco-friendly alternatives.
Scientists predict climate change will displace more than 180 million people by 2100 -- a crisis of "climate migration" the world isn't ready for, says disaster recovery lawyer and Louisiana native Colette Pichon Battle. In this passionate, lyrical talk, she urges us to radically restructure the economic and social systems that are driving climate migration -- and caused it in the first place -- and shares how we can cultivate collective resilience, better prepare before disaster strikes and advance human rights for all.
What if you never had to fill out paperwork again? In Estonia, this is a reality: citizens conduct nearly all public services online, from starting a business to voting from their laptops, thanks to the nation's ambitious post-Soviet digital transformation known as "e-Estonia." One of the program's experts, Anna Piperal, explains the key design principles that power the country's "e-government" -- and shows why the rest of the world should follow suit to eradicate outdated bureaucracy and regain citizens' trust.
We've all heard the theories on why the dinosaurs died -- but how did they come to dominate the earth for so long in the first place? (Hint: it has nothing to do with their size, speed, spikes or fantastic feathers.) Travel back in time to 200 million years before their extinction with paleontologist Emma Schachner for a breath of fresh air on dinosaur history.
The UN predicts that antimicrobial resistance will be our biggest killer by 2050. "That should really scare the hell out of all of us," says bioprocess engineer Leon Marchal. He's working on an urgently needed solution: transforming the massive, global animal feed industry. Learn why the overuse of antibiotics in animal products, from livestock feed to everyday pet treats, has skyrocketed worldwide -- and how we can take common-sense measures to stave off a potential epidemic.
Roughly 85 percent of mass in the universe is "dark matter" -- mysterious material that can't be directly observed but has an immense influence on the cosmos. What exactly is this strange stuff, and what does it have to do with our existence? Astrophysicist Risa Wechsler explores why dark matter may be the key to understanding how the universe formed -- and shares how physicists in labs around the world are coming up with creative ways to study it.
Tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable disease and death in the United States, killing more people each year than alcohol, AIDS, car accidents, illegal drugs, murder and suicide combined. Follow health policy expert Mitch Zeller into the murky depths of the tobacco industry as he details the sordid history of nicotine addiction -- and invites us to imagine a world where policy change helps stop people from becoming addicted in the first place.
How can we tap into the potential of all students, especially those who come from disadvantaged backgrounds? Sociologist Anindya Kundu invites us to take a deeper look at the personal, social and institutional challenges that keep students from thriving in the United States -- and shows how closing this "opportunity gap" means valuing public education for what it really is: the greatest investment in our collective future.
In a complex and changing world, how can we make sure unconventional people and their ideas thrive? Business executive Ipsita Dasgupta introduces the concept of "co-conspirators" -- people willing to bend or break the rules to challenge the status quo -- and shows how they can help create new ways of thinking, acting and being.
Pat Mitchell has nothing left to prove and much less to lose -- she's become a "dangerous woman." Not dangerous as in feared, she says, but fearless: a force to be reckoned with. In this powerful call to action, Mitchell invites all women, men and allies to join her in embracing the risks necessary to create a world where safety, respect and truth burn brighter than the darkness of our current times.
After being diagnosed with a rare genetic condition that deteriorates muscle, Cara E. Yar Khan was told she'd have to limit her career ambitions and dial down her dreams. She ignored that advice and instead continued to pursue her biggest ambitions. In this powerful, moving talk, she shares her philosophy for working on the projects that matter to her most -- while letting courage and fear coexist. Watch for heart-stopping, vertigo-inducing footage of a trip that shows her living her theory to the full.
Valorie Kondos Field knows a lot about winning. As the longtime coach of the UCLA women's gymnastics team, she won championship after championship and has been widely acclaimed for her leadership. In this inspiring, brutally honest and, at times, gut-wrenching talk, she shares the secret to her success. Hint: it has nothing to do with "winning."
Feeling burned out? You may be spending too much time ruminating about your job, says psychologist Guy Winch. Learn how to stop worrying about tomorrow's tasks or stewing over office tensions with three simple techniques aimed at helping you truly relax and recharge after work.
Humanity is on its way to creating a "black ball": a technological breakthrough that could destroy us all, says philosopher Nick Bostrom. In this incisive, surprisingly light-hearted conversation with Head of TED Chris Anderson, Bostrom outlines the vulnerabilities we could face if (or when) our inventions spiral beyond our control -- and explores how we can prevent our future demise.
In a world that's wasting more food than ever before, why do one in nine people still go to bed hungry each night? Social entrepreneur Jasmine Crowe calls for a radical transformation to our fight to end global hunger -- challenging us to rethink our routine approaches to addressing food insecurity and sharing how we can use technology to gather unused food and deliver it directly to people in need.
Fake news can sway elections, tank economies and sow discord in everyday life. Data scientist Sinan Aral demystifies how and why it spreads so quickly -- citing one of the largest studies on misinformation -- and identifies five strategies to help us unweave the tangled web between true and false.
We are all connected by the spectacular birth, death and rebirth of stars, says astrophysicist Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz. Journey through the cosmic history of the universe as Ramirez-Ruiz explains how supernovas forged the elements of life to create everything from the air you breathe to the very atoms that make you.
Your lifelong health may have been decided the day you were born, says microbiome researcher Henna-Maria Uusitupa. In this fascinating talk, she shows how the gut microbes you acquire during birth and as an infant impact your health into adulthood -- and discusses new microbiome research that could help tackle problems like obesity and diabetes.
Water is essential to life. Yet in the eyes of the law, it remains largely unprotected -- leaving many communities without access to safe drinking water, says legal scholar Kelsey Leonard. In this powerful talk, she shows why granting lakes and rivers legal "personhood" -- giving them the same legal rights as humans -- is the first step to protecting our bodies of water and fundamentally transforming how we value this vital resource.
To address the problem of counterfeit goods, African entrepreneurs like Bright Simons have come up with innovative and effective ways to confirm products are genuine. Now he asks: Why aren't these solutions everywhere? From password-protected medicines to digitally certified crops, Simons demonstrates the power of local ideas -- and calls on the rest of the world to listen up.
What's the difference between heroes and leaders? In this insightful talk, Lorna Davis explains how our idolization of heroes is holding us back from solving big problems -- and shows why we need "radical interdependence" to make real change happen.
Where does wealth come from, who creates it and what destroys it? In this deep dive into global economics, Mariana Mazzucato explains how we lost sight of what value means and why we need to rethink our current financial systems -- so capitalism can be steered toward a bold, innovative and sustainable future that works for all of us.
Is our obsession with efficiency actually making us less efficient? In this revelatory talk, writer and historian Edward Tenner discusses the promises and dangers of our drive to get things done as quickly as possible -- and suggests seven ways we can use "inspired inefficiency" to be more productive.
At age 81, actor and activist Jane Fonda is putting herself on the line for the planet -- literally. In a video interview with TEDWomen curator Pat Mitchell, Fonda speaks about getting arrested multiple times during Fire Drill Fridays, the weekly climate demonstrations she leads in Washington, DC -- and discusses why civil disobedience is becoming a new normal in the age of climate change.
Why does modern technology promise efficiency, but leave us constantly feeling pressed for time? Anthropologist Kathryn Bouskill explores the paradoxes of living in a fast-paced society and explains why we need to reconsider the importance of slowing down in a world that demands go, go, go.
Genuine apology goes beyond remorse, says legendary playwright Eve Ensler. In this frank, wrenching talk, she shares how she transformed her own experience of abuse into wisdom on what wrongdoers can do and say to truly repent -- and offers a four-step roadmap to help begin the process. (This talk contains mature content.)
Step into artist Cornelia Geppert's visually stunning video game "Sea of Solitude," which explores how battling the "monsters" of loneliness and self-doubt can help us better grapple with the complexity and struggles of mental health.
Ever gaze up at the starry night sky? This stunning view is at risk of disappearing -- unless we act now, says astrophysicist Kelsey Johnson. In this fascinating, unexpectedly funny talk, she explains how light pollution affects almost every species on earth (including us) and shares five "stupidly simple" things you can do to help solve the problem.
How do you raise money to get an idea off the ground, support a community, or help change the world? Take a crash course on the secret art of successful fundraising with development strategist Kara Logan Berlin as she shows how you can learn to ask for the resources you need -- and get them, too.
What kinds of stories move us to act? To answer this question, creative technologist Heidi Boisvert is measuring how people's brains and bodies unconsciously respond to different media. She shows how she's using this data to determine the specific narrative ingredients that inspire empathy and justice -- and spark large-scale social change.
Alejandro Durán uses art to spotlight the ongoing destruction of our oceans' ecosystems. In this breathtaking talk, he shows how he meticulously organizes and reuses plastic waste from around the world that washes up on the Caribbean coast of Mexico -- everything from water bottles to prosthetic legs -- to create vivid, environmental artworks that may leave you mesmerized and shocked.
Ever wondered how your smartphone works? Take a journey down to the atomic level with scientist Cathy Mulzer, who reveals how almost every component of our high-powered devices exists thanks to chemists -- and not the Silicon Valley entrepreneurs that come to most people's minds. As she puts it: "Chemistry is the hero of electronic communications."
Have you ever doubted your abilities, feared you were going to be discovered as a "fraud"? That's called "impostor syndrome," and you're definitely not alone in feeling it, says entrepreneur and CEO Mike Cannon-Brookes. In this funny, relatable talk, he shares how his own experiences of impostor syndrome helped pave the way to his success -- and shows how you can use it to your advantage, too.
In India (and many other countries), girls and women still find themselves silenced by traditional rules of politeness and restraint, says social scientist Deepa Narayan. In this frank talk, she identifies seven deeply entrenched norms that reinforce inequality -- and calls on men to help usher in change.
What happens when humans and robots make art together? In this awe-inspiring talk, artist Sougwen Chung shows how she "taught" her artistic style to a machine -- and shares the results of their collaboration after making an unexpected discovery: robots make mistakes, too. "Part of the beauty of human and machine systems is their inherent, shared fallibility," she says.
Could the strange orbits of small, distant objects in our solar system lead us to a big discovery? Planetary astronomer Mike Brown proposes the existence of a new, giant planet lurking in the far reaches of our solar system -- and shows us how traces of its presence might already be staring us in the face.
As many as 3,000 languages could disappear within the next 80 years, all but silencing entire cultures. In this quick talk, language activist Daniel Bögre Udell shows how people around the world are finding new ways to revive ancestral languages and rebuild their traditions -- and encourages us all to investigate the tongues of our ancestors. "Reclaiming your language and embracing your culture is a powerful way to be yourself," he says.
Artist LaToya Ruby Frazier spent five months living in Flint, Michigan, documenting the lives of those affected by the city's water crisis for her photo essay "Flint is Family." As the crisis dragged on, she realized it was going to take more than a series of photos to bring relief. In this inspiring, surprising talk, she shares the creative lengths she went to in order to bring free, clean water to the people of Flint.
There are more than 10,000 nuclear weapons in existence today, each one capable of causing immense destruction. Why don't we talk about this threat as much as some other major issues? In this practical talk, nuclear security expert Emma Belcher shares three questions you can ask your elected officials to gain a better understanding of nuclear weapons and the measures we need to stay safe.
Why do we make poor decisions that we know are bad for our health? In this frank, funny talk, behavioral economist and health policy expert David Asch explains why our behavior is often irrational -- in highly predictable ways -- and shows how we can harness this irrationality to make better decisions and improve our health care system overall.
India's big cities have some of the worst air quality in the world. How can we fix this public health crisis? In an actionable talk, social entrepreneur Arunabha Ghosh lays out a five-step plan to put India on the path to cleaner, safer air -- and shows how every citizen can play an active role in getting there.
What's the best way to get people to change their behavior? In this funny, information-packed talk, psychologist Dan Ariely explores why we make bad decisions even when we know we shouldn't -- and discusses a couple tricks that could get us to do the right thing (even if it's for the wrong reason).
Companies often target consumers based on gender, but this kind of advertising shortcut doesn't just perpetuate outdated stereotypes -- it's also bad for business, says marketing expert Gaby Barrios. In this clear, actionable talk, she explains why gender-based marketing doesn't drive business nearly as much as you might think -- and shows how companies can find better ways to reach customers and grow their brands.
At the US-Mexico border, policies of prolonged detention and family separation have made seeking asylum in the United States difficult and dangerous. In this raw and heartfelt talk, immigration attorney Erika Pinheiro offers a glimpse into her daily work on both sides of the border and shares some of the stories behind the statistics -- including her own story of being detained and separated from her son. It's a clear-eyed call to remember the humanity that's impacted by policy -- and a warning: "History shows us that the first population to be vilified and stripped of their rights is rarely the last," she says.
Teachers emotionally support our kids -- but who's supporting our teachers? In this eye-opening talk, educator Sydney Jensen explores how teachers are at risk of "secondary trauma" -- the idea that they absorb the emotional weight of their students' experiences -- and shows how schools can get creative in supporting everyone's mental health and wellness.
In this quick, fun talk, astronaut Cady Coleman welcomes us aboard the International Space Station, where she spent nearly six months doing experiments that expanded the frontiers of science. Hear what it's like to fly to work, sleep without gravity and live life hurtling at 17,500 miles per hour around the Earth. "The space station is the place where mission and magic come together," Coleman says.
In this glimpse into our technological future, cryptographer Craig Costello discusses the world-altering potential of quantum computers, which could shatter the limits set by today's machines -- and give code breakers a master key to the digital world. See how Costello and his fellow cryptographers are racing to reinvent encryption and secure the internet.
We're in the dawn of a new space revolution, says engineer Peter Beck: the revolution of the small. In a talk packed with insights into the state of the space industry, Beck shares his work building rockets capable of delivering small payloads to space rapidly and reliably -- helping us search for extraterrestrial life, learn more about the solar system and create a global internet network.
India has one of the world's highest rates of plastic recycling, thanks largely to an extensive network of informal recyclers known as "kabadiwalas." Entrepreneur Mani Vajipey discusses his work to organize their massive efforts into a collection system that could put India on the path to ending plastic pollution -- and show the rest of the world how to do it, too.
Human rights protector Rabiaa El Garani shares the challenging, heartbreaking story of sexual violence committed against Yazidi women and girls in Iraq by ISIS -- and her work seeking justice for the survivors. "These victims have been through unimaginable pain. But with a little help, they show how resilient they are," she says. "It is an honor to bear witness; it is a privilege to seek justice." (This talk contains mature content.)
In this lively talk and performance, artist and TED Fellow Amma Y. Ghartey-Tagoe Kootin offers a sneak peek of her forthcoming musical "At Buffalo." Drawing on archival material from the 1901 Pan-American Exhibition, a world's fair held in Buffalo, New York, the show examines conflicting representations of black identity exhibited at the fair -- highlighting unsettlingly familiar parallels between American society at the turn of the century and today, and asking: Are we all still part of the show?
Taking inspiration from nature, architect Ma Yansong designs breathtaking buildings that break free from the boxy symmetry of so many modern cities. His exuberant and graceful work -- from a pair of curvy skyscrapers that "dance" with each other to an opera house that looks like a snow-capped mountain -- shows us the beauty of architecture that defies norms.
Social media has become our new home. Can we build it better? Taking design cues from urban planners and social scientists, technologist Eli Pariser shows how the problems we're encountering on digital platforms aren't all that new -- and shares how, by following the model of thriving towns and cities, we can create trustworthy online communities.
How did the US immigration debate get to be so divisive? In this informative talk, historian and writer Paul A. Kramer shows how an "insider vs. outsider" framing has come to dominate the way people in the US talk about immigration -- and suggests a set of new questions that could reshape the conversation around whose life, rights and thriving matters.
Imagine living with no significant human contact for years, even decades, in a cell the size of a small bathroom. This is the reality for those in long-term solitary confinement, a form of imprisonment regularly imposed in US prisons. In this eye-opening talk, civil rights lawyer Laura Rovner takes us to ADX, the US federal government's only supermax prison, and describes the dehumanizing effects of long-term solitude on the mind, personality and sense of self. What emerges is an urgent case for abolishing solitary confinement -- and evidence for how our tax dollars, public safety and values are implicated in it. "Prisons are administered in our name and on our behalf," she says. "We have an obligation to bear witness."
Tashka and Laura Yawanawá lead the Yawanawá people in Acre, Brazil -- a tribe that stewards almost 500,000 acres of Amazon rainforest. As footage of the Amazon burning shocks the world's consciousness, Tashka and Laura call for us to transform this moment into an opportunity to support indigenous people who have the experience, knowledge and tools needed to protect the land.
Dive into the deep with open water swimmer Bhakti Sharma, as she shares what she learned about resilience during her personal journey from the scorching heat of Rajasthan, India to the bone-chilling waters of her record-breaking swim in Antarctica and her courageous crossing of the English Channel. "In the middle of the ocean, there is nowhere to hide," Sharma says.
As a "corporate suit" (his words) and former VP of sustainability at McDonald's, Bob Langert works with companies and their strongest critics to find solutions that are good for both business and society. In this actionable talk, he shares stories from the decades-long transition into corporate sustainability at McDonald's -- including his work with unlikely partners like the Environmental Defense Fund and Temple Grandin -- and shows why your adversaries can sometimes be your best allies.
The cells in your body are like computer software: they're "programmed" to carry out specific functions at specific times. If we can better understand this process, we could unlock the ability to reprogram cells ourselves, says computational biologist Sara-Jane Dunn. In a talk from the cutting-edge of science, she explains how her team is studying embryonic stem cells to gain a new understanding of the biological programs that power life -- and develop "living software" that could transform medicine, agriculture and energy.
Stories help you make sense of your life -- but when these narratives are incomplete or misleading, they can keep you stuck instead of providing clarity. In an actionable talk, psychotherapist and advice columnist Lori Gottlieb shows how to break free from the stories you've been telling yourself by becoming your own editor and rewriting your narrative from a different point of view.
Could we anticipate the next big disease outbreak, stopping a virus like Ebola before it ever strikes? In this talk about frontline scientific research, ecologist Daniel Streicker takes us to the Amazon rainforest in Peru where he tracks the movement of vampire bats in order to forecast and prevent rabies outbreaks. By studying these disease patterns, Streicker shows how we could learn to cut off the next pandemic at its source.
Got an idea to make your workplace better? Labor organizer and TED Fellow Jess Kutch can show you how to put it into action. In this quick talk, she explains how "productive conflict" -- when people organize to challenge and change their work lives for the better -- can be beneficial for employees and employers alike.
Resource inequality is one of our greatest challenges, but it's not unique to humans. Like us, mycorrhizal fungi that live in plant and tree roots strategically trade, steal and withhold resources, displaying remarkable parallels to humans in their capacity to be opportunistic (and sometimes ruthless) -- all in the absence of cognition. In a mind-blowing talk, evolutionary biologist Toby Kiers shares what fungi networks and relationships reveal about human economies, and what they can tell us about inequality.
Millions of images and videos are uploaded to the internet each day, yet we rarely see shocking and disturbing content in our social media feeds. Who's keeping the internet "clean" for us? In this eye-opening talk, documentarians Hans Block and Moritz Riesewieck take us inside the shadowy world of online content moderators -- the people contracted by major platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Google to rid the internet of toxic material. Learn more about the psychological impact of this kind of work -- and how "digital cleaning" influences what all of us see and think.
Many diseases are driven by metabolites -- small molecules in your body like fat, glucose and cholesterol -- but we don't know exactly what they are or how they work. Biotech entrepreneur and TED Fellow Leila Pirhaji shares her plan to build an AI-based network to characterize metabolite patterns, better understand how disease develops -- and discover more effective treatments.
Energy poverty, or the lack of access to electricity and other basic energy services, affects nearly two-thirds of Sub-Saharan Africa. As the region's population continues to increase, so will the need to build a new energy system to grow with it, says Rose M. Mutiso. In a bold talk, she discusses how a balanced mix of solutions like solar, wind farms, geothermal power and modern grids could create a high-energy future for Africa -- providing reliable electricity, creating jobs and raising incomes.
Neuroscientist Beau Lotto conducted an ambitious study with Cirque du Soleil on the emotion of awe and its psychological and behavioral benefits. In this talk and live performance, he shares some of their findings -- and stands back as Cirque du Soleil dancers create their own awe-inducing spectacle.
How can we stop the spread of misleading, sometimes dangerous content while maintaining an internet with freedom of expression at its core? Misinformation expert Claire Wardle explores the new challenges of our polluted online environment and maps out a plan to transform the internet into a place of trust -- with the help everyday users. "Together, let's rebuild our information commons," she says.
Mangrove forests are crucial to the health of the planet, gobbling up CO2 from the atmosphere and providing a home for a diverse array of species. But these rich habitats are under continual threat from deforestation and industry. In an empowering talk, conservationist and TED Fellow Ashwin Naidu shares how community-driven efforts in South and Southeast Asia are working to protect mangroves -- all with a little help from the mysterious and endangered fishing cat.
On the heels of the breakout success of his film "Crazy Rich Asians," director Jon M. Chu reflects on what drives him to create -- and makes a resounding case for the power of connection and on-screen representation.
How do you fix broken public systems? You spark people's competitive spirit. In a talk about getting people motivated to make change, public sector strategist Abhishek Gopalka discusses how he helped improve the health system of Rajasthan, a state in India home to more than 80 million people, using the powers of transparency and public accountability. "Motivation doesn't just appear," Gopalka says. "Something needs to change to make you care."
The danger of artificial intelligence isn't that it's going to rebel against us, but that it's going to do exactly what we ask it to do, says AI researcher Janelle Shane. Sharing the weird, sometimes alarming antics of AI algorithms as they try to solve human problems -- like creating new ice cream flavors or recognizing cars on the road -- Shane shows why AI doesn't yet measure up to real brains.
Fashion designers have the power to change culture -- and Becca McCharen-Tran is using her platform to expand the industry's narrow definition of beauty. Sharing highlights of her work, McCharen-Tran discusses the inspiration behind her norm-shattering designs and shows how she's celebrating beauty in all forms. "I want the consumer to know that it's not your body that needs to change -- it's the clothes," she says.
What if we could diagnose some of the world's deadliest diseases by the smells our bodies give off? In a fascinating talk and live demo, biologist James Logan introduces Freya, a malaria-sniffing dog, to show how we can harness the awesome powers of animal scent to detect chemical signatures associated with infection -- and change the way we diagnose disease.
Ninety-nine percent of cancer drugs never make it to tumors, getting washed out of the body before they have time to do their job. How can we better deliver life-saving drugs? Cancer researcher Joy Wolfram shares cutting-edge medical research into nanoparticles -- tiny particles that could be used to deliver drugs accurately to tumors -- and explains how they could keep drugs in the body longer to attack malignant cells.
Over the course of hundreds of scuba dives, marine biologist Ayana Elizabeth Johnson fell in love -- with a fish. In this ode to parrotfish, she shares five reasons why these creatures are simply amazing (from their ability to poop white sand to make colorful "wardrobe changes") and shows what's at stake -- for us and them -- as climate change threatens the future of coral reefs.
We need a radically new approach to ocean conservation, says marine biologist and TED Fellow Alasdair Harris. In a visionary talk, he lays out a surprising solution to the problem of overfishing that could both revive marine life and rebuild local fisheries -- all by taking less from the ocean. "When we design it right, marine conservation reaps dividends that go far beyond protecting nature," he says.
During the winter of 2018-2019, one million tons of salt were applied to icy roads in the state of Pennsylvania alone. The salt from industrial uses like this often ends up in freshwater rivers, making their water undrinkable and contributing to a growing global crisis. How can we better protect these precious natural resources? Physical organic chemist Tina Arrowood shares a three-step plan to keep salt out of rivers -- and create a circular salt economy that turns industrial byproducts into valuable resources.
How does psychological trauma affect children's developing brains? In this powerful talk, social worker Luis H. Zayas discusses his work with refugees and asylum-seeking families at the US-Mexico border. What emerges is a stunning analysis of the long-term impact of the US's controversial detention and child separation policies -- and practical steps for how the country can do better.
Over his eight-year prison sentence, Marcus Bullock was sustained by his mother's love -- and by the daily letters and photos she sent of life on the outside. Years later, as an entrepreneur, Bullock asked himself: How can I make it easier for all families to stay connected during incarceration? Enter FlikShop: an app he developed that lets families send quick postcards to loved ones in prison and help keep open a critical line of support.
Social entrepreneur Julie Cordua works on a problem that isn't easy to talk about: the sexual abuse of children in images and videos on the internet. At Thorn, she's building technology to connect the dots between the tech industry, law enforcement and government -- so we can swiftly end the viral distribution of abuse material and rescue children faster. Learn more about how this scalable solution could help dismantle the communities normalizing child sexual abuse around the world today. (This ambitious plan is part of the Audacious Project, TED's initiative to inspire and fund global change.)
Theoretical physicist David Deutsch delivers a mind-bending meditation on the "great monotony" -- the idea that nothing novel has appeared in the universe for billions of years -- and shows how humanity's capacity to create explanatory knowledge could be the thing that bucks this trend. "Humans are not playthings of cosmic forces," he says. "We are users of cosmic forces."
"Dance can elevate our human experience beyond words," says Judith Jamison, artistic director emerita of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. In between performances of excerpts from Alvin Ailey's classic works "Revelations" and "Cry," Jamison reflects on the enduring power of dance to transform history into art that thrills audiences around the world. (Performances by Solomon Dumas, Samantha Figgins and Constance Stamatiou)
Most of us know Bruce Lee as the famous martial artist and action film star -- but he was also a philosopher who taught "self-actualization": the practice of how to be yourself in the best way possible. In this inspiring talk, Bruce's daughter Shannon Lee takes us inside the mind of her father, exploring how to use his philosophy in your daily life to achieve profound personal growth and make a lasting impact.
Nearly 800 million people worldwide depend on cassava for survival -- but this critical food source is under attack by entirely preventable viruses, says computational biologist and TED Senior Fellow Laura Boykin. She takes us to the farms in East Africa where she's working with a diverse team of scientists to help farmers keep their crops healthy using a portable DNA lab and mini supercomputer that can identify viruses in hours, instead of months.
In this powerful, personal talk, author and academic Juan Enriquez shares stories from inside the immigration crisis at the US-Mexico border, bringing this often-abstract debate back down to earth -- and showing what you can do every day to create a sense of belonging for immigrants. "This isn't about kids and borders," he says. "It's about us. This is about who we are, who we the people are, as a nation and as individuals."
Plastic is an incredible substance for the economy -- and the worst substance possible for the environment, says entrepreneur Andrew Forrest. In a conversation meant to spark debate, Forrest and head of TED Chris Anderson discuss an ambitious plan to get the world's biggest companies to fund an environmental revolution -- and transition industry towards getting all of its plastic from recycled materials, not from fossil fuels.
Local reporters are on the front lines of important stories, but their work often goes unnoticed by national and international news outlets. TED Fellow and journalist Gangadhar Patil is working to change that. In this quick talk, he shows how he's connecting grassroots reporters in India with major news outlets worldwide -- and helping elevate and expose stories that might never get covered otherwise.
A full third of the world's population -- 2.6 billion people -- play video games, plugging into massive networks of interaction that have opened up opportunities well beyond entertainment. In a talk about the future of the medium, entrepreneur Herman Narula makes the case for a new understanding of gaming -- one that includes the power to create new worlds, connect people and shape the economy.
Exactly when and where did life on Earth begin? Scientists have long thought that it emerged three billion years ago in the ocean -- until astrobiologist Tara Djokic and her team made an unexpected discovery in the western Australian desert. Learn how an ancient rock found near a hot volcanic pool is shifting our understanding of the origin-of-life puzzle.
Traditional thinking on corruption goes like this: if you put good laws in place and enforce them well, then economic development increases and corruption falls. In reality, we have the equation backwards, says innovation researcher Efosa Ojomo. In this compelling talk, he offers new thinking on how we could potentially eliminate corruption worldwide by focusing on one thing: scarcity. "Societies don't develop because they've reduced corruption," he says. "They're able to reduce corruption because they've developed."
Civilization rests upon the existence of language, says language creator David Peterson. In a talk that's equal parts passionate and hilarious, he shows how studying, preserving and inventing new languages helps us understand our collective humanity -- and gives a quick lesson on High Valyrian, one of two languages he created for "Game of Thrones" (along with Dothraki). "Language is not merely a tool," he says. "It is our legacy, it's our way of conveying what it means to be human."
With fascinating research and hilarious anecdotes, neuroscientist Camilla Arndal Andersen takes us into the lab where she studies people's sense of taste via brain scans. She reveals surprising insights about the way our brains subconsciously experience food -- and shows how this data could help us eat healthier without sacrificing taste.
The US health care system assumes many things about patients: that they can take off from work in the middle of the day, speak English, have a working telephone and a steady supply of food. Because of that, it's failing many of those who are most in need, says Mitchell Katz, CEO of the largest public health care system in the US. In this eye-opening talk, he shares stories of the challenges low-income patients face -- and how we can build a better system for all.
Conservationist and TED Fellow Moreangels Mbizah studied the famous Cecil the lion until he was shot by a trophy hunter in 2015. She wonders how things could've gone differently, asking: "What if the community that lived next to Cecil was involved in protecting him?" In a quick talk, Mbizah shares the state of conservation in her home of Zimbabwe -- and why she thinks that communities living with wildlife are the ones best positioned to help them.
The average farmer in America makes less than 15 cents of every dollar on a product that you purchase at a store. They feed our communities, but farmers often cannot afford the very foods they grow. In this actionable talk, social entrepreneur Mohammad Modarres shows how to put your purchasing power into action to save local agriculture from collapse and transform the food industry from the bottom up.
Artist Sarah Sze takes us on a kaleidoscopic journey through her work: immersive installations as tall as buildings, splashed across walls, orbiting through galleries -- blurring the lines between time, memory and space. Explore how we give meaning to objects in this beautiful tour of Sze's experiential, multimedia art.
In a hopeful talk followed by an empowering performance, musician and TED Fellow Muthoni Drummer Queen shares how industries like music, film and fashion provide a platform for Africans to broadcast their rich and diverse talents -- and explains how the shared experience of creativity can replace attitudes of exclusionism and othering with acceptance and self-love.
Artist Sam Van Aken shares the breathtaking work behind the "Tree of 40 Fruit," an ongoing series of hybridized fruit trees that grow 40 different varieties of peaches, plums, apricots, nectarines and cherries -- all on the same tree. What began as an art project to showcase beautiful, multi-hued blossoms has become a living archive of rare heirloom specimens and their histories, a hands-on (and delicious!) way to teach people about cultivation and a vivid symbol of the need for biodiversity to ensure food security. "More than just food, embedded in these fruit is our culture ... In many ways, these fruit are our story," Van Aken says.
"Building a 30-foot-high concrete structure from sea to shining sea is the most expensive and least effective way to do border security," says Congressman Will Hurd, a Republican from Texas whose district encompasses two times zones and shares an 820-mile border with Mexico. Speaking from Washington, DC in a video interview with former state attorney general Anne Milgram, Hurd discusses the US government's border policy and its controversial detention and child separation practices -- and lays out steps toward a better future at the border. (Recorded at the TED World Theater in New York on September 10, 2019)
Computational geneticist Yaniv Erlich helped build the world's largest family tree -- comprising 13 million people and going back more than 500 years. He shares fascinating patterns that emerged from the work -- about our love lives, our health, even decades-old criminal cases -- and shows how crowdsourced genealogy databases can shed light not only on the past but also on the future.
As a sex educator, Emily Nagoski is often asked: How do couples sustain a strong sexual connection over the long term? In this funny, insightful talk, she shares her answer -- drawing on (somewhat surprising) research to reveal why some couples stop having sex while others keep up a connection for a lifetime.
It's time for planetary-scale interventions to combat climate change -- and environmentalist Tim Flannery thinks seaweed can help. In a bold talk, he shares the epic carbon-capturing potential of seaweed, explaining how oceangoing seaweed farms created on a massive scale could trap all the carbon we emit into the atmosphere. Learn more about this potentially planet-saving solution -- and the work that's still needed to get there.
"Girls' education is the closest thing we have to a silver bullet to help solve some of the world's most difficult problems," says social entrepreneur Safeena Husain. In a visionary talk, she shares her plan to enroll a staggering 1.6 million girls in school over the next five years -- combining advanced analytics with door-to-door community engagement to create new educational pathways for girls in India. (This ambitious plan is part of the Audacious Project, TED's initiative to inspire and fund global change.)
We need a global weather service for water, says entrepreneur and TED Fellow Sonaar Luthra. In a talk about environmental accountability, Luthra shows how we could forecast water shortages and risks with a global data collection effort -- just like we monitor the movement of storms -- and better listen to what the earth is telling us.
"Doctor, is this really necessary?" Backed by startling statistics about overtreatment, neurosurgeon Christer Mjåset explains the power of this and other simple questions in the context of medical treatment and surgery -- and shares how patients can better work with doctors to get the care they need.
In a moving talk, journalist Johann Hari shares fresh insights on the causes of depression and anxiety from experts around the world -- as well as some exciting emerging solutions. "If you're depressed or anxious, you're not weak and you're not crazy -- you're a human being with unmet needs," Hari says.
To study a system as complex as the entire universe, astrophysicists need to be experts at extracting simple solutions from large data sets. What else could they do with this expertise? In an interdisciplinary talk, TED Fellow and astrophysicist Federica Bianco explains how she uses astrophysical data analysis to solve urban and social problems -- as well as stellar mysteries.
We need humor like we need the air we breathe, says editorial cartoonist Patrick Chappatte. In a talk illustrated with highlights from a career spent skewering everything from dictators and ideologues to selfies and social media mobs, Chappatte makes a resounding, often hilarious case for the necessity of satire. "Political cartoons were born with democracy, and they are challenged when freedom is," he says.
Rising carbon levels in the atmosphere can make plants grow faster, but there's another hidden consequence: they rob plants of the nutrients and vitamins we need to survive. In a talk about global food security, epidemiologist Kristie Ebi explores the potentially massive health consequences of this growing nutrition crisis -- and explores the steps we can take to ensure all people have access to safe, healthy food.
In a talk and demo, Twitch cofounder Emmett Shear shares his vision for the future of interactive entertainment -- and explains how video game streaming is helping people build communities online. "I am excited for a world where our entertainment could connect us instead of isolating us -- a world where we can bond with each other over our shared interests and create real, strong communities," Shear says.
Rising inequality and growing political instability are the direct result of decades of bad economic theory, says entrepreneur Nick Hanauer. In a visionary talk, he dismantles the mantra that "greed is good" -- an idea he describes as not only morally corrosive, but also scientifically wrong -- and lays out a new theory of economics powered by reciprocity and cooperation.
Community organizer Raj Jayadev wants to transform the US court system through "participatory defense" -- a growing movement that empowers families and community members to impact their loved ones' court cases. He shares the remarkable results of their work -- including more than 4,000 years of "time saved" from incarceration -- and shows how this new model could shift the landscape of power in the courts.