Challenges of the 21st Century

Equalising education

Equalising education

  LOUISE TICKLE (CHAIR)
  ANN COTTON OBE

  PROFESSOR ELAINE
  UNTERHALTER

The deadline for meeting the Millennium Development Goal target of eliminating gender disparity in education by 2015 is looming. How far have we come in equalising access to education, work and decision-making?

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Air quality for all

Air quality for all

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FRED PEARCE (CHAIR)
PROFESSOR FRANK KELLY

SARAH COLLINS
JAMES THORNTON

Taking inspiration from around the world, a panel will discuss the hidden hazard of today: poor air quality.

How can creative technology and new thinking can help us all breathe more easily?

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Escape to the city

Escape to the city

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PROFESSOR RACHEL COOPER OBE (CHAIR)
LEO HOLLIS
JEREMY BENTHAM
DR GEORGE MACKERRON

Around 75% of the world’s population will live in cities by 2050.

What impact is urban living having on our wellbeing? What can we learn from cities around the world? And how can we balance rapid urbanisation with quality of life?

Join us and our expert panel to discuss whether we should all ‘escape to the city’.

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Mobile middle class

Mobile middle class

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CLAIRE PROVOST
MIKE SAVAGE
STEWART LANSLEY
FELIX PRESTON

The global class system is changing. By 2030, two billion people will join the middle class from emerging economies, leaving Europe and North America with less than a third of the total middle class population. What impact is this having on people and the planet?

 

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Big data, big impact?

Big data, big impact?

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TIMANDRA HARKNESS
PROFESSOR MIKE BATTY
DR FARIDA VIS
ED PARSONS

We are living in a data explosion where we generate and consume data faster than we can keep track of and secure. This volume of new data presents us with additional challenges: what are we going to do with it? How are we unlocking its potential? And how are we making it work for society?

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Feeding the 9 billion

Feeding the 9 billion

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JAY RAYNER (CHAIR)
PROFESSOR TIM WHEELER
PETER SMITHERS
EDD COLBERT

Our global food system is under increasing strain. We need to produce and supply enough safe and nutritious food in a sustainable way to a population which is expected to rise to 9 billion by 2050. How are we meeting this challenge with new technology as well as new thinking?

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Countryside in Crisis?

Countryside in Crisis?

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CRAIG BENNETT
PROFESSOR NICK PIDGEON
DOMINIC DYER
TOM HEAP (Chair)

Environmental risks and hazards like bovine TB, ash dieback and neonicotinoid pesticides are affecting our biodiversity and agriculture. Is Government getting its policies right and striking a balance between maximising innovation and minimising harm?

 

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The Energy Water Food Stress Nexus

The Energy Water Food Stress Nexus

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TIM BROWN 
PETER VOSER
 
PROFESSOR KEVIN NOONE 
PROFESSOR JUDITH REES (Chair)

The world's energy, water and food systems are tightly linked. How will these vital resources cope in the coming decades from a growing and more prosperous global population?

 

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Unsustainable Fishing

Unsustainable Fishing

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PAUL ROSE 
FRANK POPE 
DR DAVID AGNEW 
DR HEATHER KOLDEWEY 

How can we avoid the collapse of a resource that remains an essential part of food security and vital to the communities and livelihoods of half a billion people across the planet? 

 

 

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Keeping pace with a digital revolution

Keeping pace with a digital revolution

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DR ALEKS KROTOSKI 
BEN HAMMERSLEY 
NICK HARKAWAY 
RORY CELLAN-JONES

The internet is rapidly evolving to play a central role in society, transforming social, cultural, economic and political landscapes. 

The benefits are clear, but are societies equipped to keep pace with the consequences of our increasing reliance on this technology?

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Global health in the 21st Century

Global health in the 21st Century

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PROF PETER PIOT M.D
PROF W. IAN LIPKIN M.D
DR MARIE CHARLES M.D
FERGUS WALSH (chair)

Can societies strike a balance between combating the dangers of viral outbreaks and pandemics, while maintaining the hopes of eradicating established diseases, such as malaria and HIV/AIDS, which continue to claim millions of lives each year?

 

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Adapting to an urban future

Adapting to an urban future

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ROBERT NEUWIRTH
DOUG SAUNDERS
PETER
BISHOP
SAMIRA AHMED (chair) 

Humans are rapidly becoming an urban species.

Global population has passed 7 billion, 3.5 billion people are urbanised and over 1 billion people now live in slums.

How will urban centres keep pace with predicted continuing growth? What are the visions of tomorrow’s cities?

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Educating for tomorrow

Educating for tomorrow

Living in an increasingly globalised society offers both opportunities and challenges.

How can education best prepare young Britons to fulfil their potential in a rapidly changing world?

Interview with Evan Davis, BBC

Interview with Salman Khan

Interview with Richard Gerver

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Digital technology in Africa

Digital technology in Africa

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NICHOLAS NEGROPONTE
ERIK HERSMAN
HERMAN
CHINERY-HESSE
RORY CELLAN-JONES (chair)

How can digital technologies such as mobiles and laptops offer the countries of Africa realistic economic, educational and development opportunities.

Interview with Ken Banks, Frontline SMS

Interview with Tim Unwin, UNESCO Chair in ICT4D

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Persistent poverty in Britain

Persistent poverty in Britain

FRANK FIELD MP
JOHN BIRD MBE
JULIA
UNWIN MBE
MARK EASTON (chair)

Britain is the world’s fifth richest country, yet poverty in Britain is rising. With paid work failing to reduce poverty for many, how can Britain best tackle this growing issue?  

 

Interview with Kate Wareing, Oxfam

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Can the UK ever be sustainable?

Can the UK ever be sustainable?

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SIR STUART ROSE
Rt Hon HILARY BENN MP
ANDY
HOBSBAWM
JO CONFINO (chair)

Our way of life is placing an increasing burden on the planet, but how realistic are visions of a sustainable future? How can business, politics and the creative industries help create a sustainable future?  

Interview with Tim Smit, Eden Project

Interview with Professor Tim Jackson 

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Plastic pollution in the oceans

Plastic pollution in the oceans

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DAVID DE ROTHSCHILD
DR SIMON BOXALL
PETER
DAVIS
DAVID SHUKMAN (chair)

Our throw away society is polluting large areas of the world's oceans with plastics, threatening marine life and food chains. How did it get there? What are the practical solutions? Is it time to re-evaluate waste as a resource?

Interview with Sylvia Earle

Interview with Prof Richard Thompson

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Natural disasters: how to improve?

Natural disasters: how to improve?

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CAMERON SINCLAIR
DAME BARBARA STOCKING
MARTIN
BELL (chair)

How can we improve our response to natural disasters and ensure lessons learnt benefit vulnerable communities worldwide in the long-term?  

Interview with Professor David Sanderson

Interview with Brendan Gormley, Chief Executive DEC

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Not In My Back Yard

Not In My Back Yard

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DAME FIONA REYNOLDS
JIM STEER
ANTONY
OLIVER
JULIAN GLOVER (chair)

With pressure on the UK’s ageing energy and transport infrastructures mounting, is it time to put projects of national importance ahead of local concerns? Or does this bypass our democratic right to object?  

Interview with Ken Livingstone

Interview with Shaun Spiers, CEO of CPRE 

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Digital Divide in the UK?

Digital Divide in the UK?

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MARTHA LANE FOX
PROFESSOR TANYA BYRON
RORY
CELLAN-JONES (chair)

Does the internet's rapid evolution and increasing role in daily life threaten to leave some sections of society behind?

Interview with Lord David Puttnam

Interview with Professor Michael Hulme

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Importing goods, exporting drought?

Importing goods, exporting drought?

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ANDY WALES
ROBIN FARRINGTON
GEORGE
ALAGIAH (chair)

The scale of global water consumption needed to produce what we use and consume has a dramatic impact around the world. From the food we eat to the clothes we wear, discover the hidden cost of Britain's consumption.

Interview with Professor Tim Lang

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Britain’s ageing population

Britain’s ageing population

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ANGELA EAGLE MP
GEORGE MAGNUS
SAMIRA
AHMED (chair)

As the baby boom generation approach retirement, Britain's population is ageing.

Discover the changing nature of retirement; the importance of older people in the workforce; the increasing pressures on public services and how Britain is adapting to an ageing society.  

Britain's ageing population 

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Engineering our climate

Engineering our climate

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PROFESSOR DAVID KEITH
DR PAUL JOHNSTON
TOM
CLARKE (chair)

Geo-engineering, the deliberate manipulation of the earth's climate, is not a solution to climate change.

But can it be an effective means to delay its impact? Should we be researching it as 'Plan B'?  

What is geo-engineering?

60 second guides: cloud reflectivity, Carbon Capture Storage, suphur screens, artificial trees 

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The future shape of Capitalism

The future shape of Capitalism

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Rt Hon VINCE CABLE MP
JOHN MICKLETHWAIT
EVAN
DAVIS (chair)

Will the recent financial crisis and the downturn in the global economy change the shape of capitalism as we know it today?  

Interview with Professor Tim Jackson, Prosperity without growth

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Migration: skills and the job market

Migration: skills and the job market

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SIR ANDREW GREEN
PHILIPPE LEGRAIN
KHALID
KOSER
JONTY BLOOM (chair)

Too often controversy surrounding UK migration and what impacts migrants have on our economy and society is based on myth, fear and falsehood.

Explore some of the issues and misconceptions around changing European workforce patterns in the 21st Century.  

Balanced migration report

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Razing the Rainforest

Razing the Rainforest

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SENATOR MARINA SILVA
WARREN EVANS
SIMON
COUNSELL
SIR GORDON CONWAY (chair)

How can we best conserve the world's rainforests in the face of enormous challenges from palm oil, timber trade, green colonialism and biofuels?  

Interview with Tony Juniper

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London under water

London under water

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ALEX NIXON
DAVE WARDLE
ROWAN
DOUGLAS
EVAN DAVIS (chair)

What is the threat of flooding to London’s people and infrastructure? How will current defences cope with enhanced flood risk to the capital over the next 30 years?  

The history of the London Thames Barrier

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Concreting the countryside

Concreting the countryside

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SIR PETER HALL
MARTIN CROOKSTON
SIMON
JENKINS (chair)

How should we accommodate the housing expansion in London and SE England? Should we be building on greenfield or brownfield land?  

What are Eco Towns?

Wayne Hemingway - Tour of Staiths Housing Project 

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Future of low carbon energy

Future of low carbon energy

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LORD JOHN BROWNE
MALCOLM WICKS MP
SIR GORDON CONWAY (chair)

With countries across the world working towards a low carbon future, how can global investment be encouraged to forward low carbon technologies?   Interview with Professor Chris Rapley, Director of the Science MuseumInterview with Andy Hobsbawm 

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Africa in the 21st Century

Africa in the 21st Century

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KOFI ANNAN
SIR BOB GELDOF
SIR GORDON
CONWAY (chair)

Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations, and humanitarian Sir Bob Geldof discuss the major challenges facing the countries of Africa in the 21st century.  

60 second guide: Trade Vs Aid

60 second guide: Climate change impact in Africa 

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