Change your mind. Change the world.

The world's leading thinkers in live debates on the critical issues of our time.

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Programme

If you're already a subscriber or ticket-holder, access the event by clicking 'Live Venue' above.

We've just released our first events for the IAI Live series - the first of many in a programme of decisive debates, talks, interviews and more at the forefront of new ideas.

Nobel Prize winners, political kingmakers cutting edge philosophers and radical scientists will go head to head in an unparalleled IAI Live lineup.

Each event is a full evening's entertainment - featuring the headline debate, speaker sessions,  introductory talks, and the opportunity to join the debate yourself in our social spaces. All taking place within a totally unique virtual reality venue.

Below find our first headline debates. You can get access to all these fantastic events with an IAI Live subscription, starting at just £5.99 a month.

Mon 7th December 6:00 pm
Getting Real about Global Power

Getting Real about Global Power

Is the West irrelevant?

Many argue that the West is in decline, some go further claiming the Asian age has already begun. Yet US politics dominates the media. Are we in denial? Does the West cling to the idea of dominance fearing the reality of a radically different future? Or is the end of the West overdone?

Is it time to recognise that it is just not that important who the US president is, or what American policy is in the world? Should we be focussing on China, and its recently announced 5 year plan to triple GDP by 2035 and its 'civil-military strategy' to use technological advance to strengthen military power? Or does the US remain the most influential country in the world and will it remain so for decades to come?

The Panel

Former US Assistant Secretary of Defense and current Harvard University Professor Joseph Nye, former UK Foreign Secretary Malcolm Rifkind, China reporter and broadcast editor at The Spectator Cindy Yu and Global Reporting Centre collaborator Melissa Chan get real about global power. Rana Mitter hosts.

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Mon 26th October 6:00 pm
Passion, Action and Hypocrisy (previous event)

Passion, Action and Hypocrisy (previous event)

From family feuds to Twitter tirades, many speak passionately about the need for change, and draw inspiration from individuals who risked life and limb for progress. Yet few act on their beliefs, other than the occasional vote, and many continue to participate in systems that they publicly condemn and deem unjust.

Are we cowards, hypocrites or worse? Should we accept that we don't have the answers and leave it to those elected to find solutions to intractable problems? Do we have to recognise that individuals don't have the capacity to change the course of history and find contentment in living according to our own values in our own lives? Or is it the duty of all citizens to act on our beliefs and do all we can to change society in ways we think necessary?

The Panel

Hosted by journalist and broadcaster Isabel Hilton,

American primitivist ecophilosopher John Zerzan, Novara Media co-founder Aaron Bastani, banker turned Buddhist nun Emma Slade, and former UK Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable.

 

In association with:

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Mon 9th November 6:00 pm
The Survival Paradox (previous event)

The Survival Paradox (previous event)

We are working toward a true account of the universe, and the world we see around us is an accurate picture of reality.  Or so most of us believe. At the same time we think we, along with our experience, are a product of evolution.  Yet evolution is driven by survival not by truth.  Some scientists go further and argue that evolution rules out even the possibility that we experience an accurate and true account of reality.  

Should we conclude that while our biology enables us to successfully function in the world, our experiences and theories are illusions rather than truths?  Is the theory of evolution itself flawed, unable to account for the truth of the theory itself?  Or can we fashion a new account of ourselves that would give us a better way to understand both who we are, the process of evolution, and our relationship to reality?  

The Panel

Hosted by documentary film-maker David Malone.

Distinguished Professor of Philosophy Graham Harman, Associate Professor of History and Philosophy of Science Mazviita Chirimuuta, and cognitive psychologist Donald Hoffman.

Mon 23rd November 6:00 pm
Our Saviour or Our Downfall (previous event)

Our Saviour or Our Downfall (previous event)

From climate change to nuclear weapons, surveillance to resource depletion, science is increasingly in the firing line. As a result, many are highly critical of science and the organisations it is seen to sustain - from agribusiness and military spending to big pharma and big tech. Yet faced with a global pandemic the same critics look to science for the solutions, to find a vaccine, to create drugs to fight the disease, to efficiently manufacture and distribute billions of items of protective equipment. 

Should we end the hypocrisy and see science as our saviour? Or have technological advances led humanity into a dark and troubling world from which we need to reverse? To avoid these polarised options, can and should we intervene to direct and control the way science is used and by whom? And if so, is the politics of science and technology central to the future?  

The Panel

Biologist and evolutionary theorist Bret Weinstein, inventor of voice assistant SIRI Luc Julia, genetic researcher Güneş Taylor and Flint water crisis whistle-blower Marc EdwardsMary Ann Sieghart hosts.