Thousands of languages thrive across the globe, yet modern speech technology -- and all of its benefits -- supports just over a hundred. Computational linguist Kalika Bali dreams of a day when technology acts as a bridge instead of a barrier, working..
Business in Africa is booming -- but international companies are missing out, says emerging markets expert Nomava Zanazo. Rushing in without knowing their customers, businesses underestimate Africans and make costly assumptions about their diversity,..
Companies in the US spend billions of dollars each year on diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, but subtle (and not so subtle) workplace biases often cost these initiatives -- and the people they're meant to help -- big time by undermining..
Would you pay two percent more for the carbon-neutral version of the products you buy and use every day? In this innovative talk, climate pathfinder Jens Burchardt walks us through the costs and considerations of producing planet-friendly products --..
With candor and cunning, sex historian Kate Lister chronicles the curious journey of an ancient, honest word with innocent origins and a now-scandalous connotation in this uproarious love letter to etymology, queens, cows and all things "cunt."
How do you effectively regulate stress? Therapist Esther Perel discusses the importance of creating routines, rituals and boundaries to deal with pandemic-related loss and uncertainty -- both at home and at work -- and offers some practical tools and..
Dictionaries and grammar "rules" don't have the final word on language -- and believing they do can harm more than help, especially for the trans community. Sociolinguist Archie Crowley deconstructs three common myths around language, demonstrating..
Farmers stand at the center of the world, says Andrew Youn, cofounder of One Acre Fund, an agricultural organization that's empowering sub-Saharan farm families with the loans, seeds, fertilizer and training needed to increase crop yields and end..
Colleges and universities in the US make billions of dollars each year from sports, compromising the health and education of athletes -- who are disproportionately Black -- in the name of money, power and pride. Sports lawyer and former NCAA..
The "broken" US political system is actually working exactly as designed, says business leader and activist Katherine Gehl. Examining the system through a nonpartisan lens, she makes the case for voting innovations, already implemented in parts of the..
The single most important thing for avoiding a climate disaster is cutting carbon pollution from the current 51 billion tons per year to zero, says philanthropist and technologist Bill Gates. Introducing the concept of the "green premium" -- the..
How does an astronaut prepare physically and mentally to launch into space? NASA astronaut Megan McArthur, who will take part in the SpaceX Crew-2 mission later this month, shares stellar life lessons on how to cultivate the resolve to do incredible..
From hours-long lines and limited polling locations to confusing and discriminatory registration policies, why is it so hard to vote in the US? Voting rights expert Amber McReynolds offers a proven alternative: a new process, already happening in..
The only thing as powerful as our grief is the love we have for those we've lost, says photographer Caroline Catlin. In this meditation on the intersection of life and death, Catlin shares how her personal journey with loss drove her to capture the..
Biodesigner Natsai Audrey Chieza prototypes the future, imagining a world where people and nature can thrive together. In this wildly imaginative talk, she shares the vision behind her innovation lab, which works at the intersection of nature,..
Higher education remains rooted in rigid, traditional structures and tracks -- and it's at risk of getting left behind in favor of expanded access, greater flexibility and tailored learning. Educator Tyler DeWitt explains how innovations in digital..
"We need to figure out how we go into conversations not looking for the victory, but the progress," says world debate champion Julia Dhar. In this practical talk, she shares three essential features of productive disagreements grounded in curiosity..
Picture your favorite place in nature. How would you feel if it disappeared tomorrow? In this love letter to the planet, social worker and environmental activist Knut Ivar Bjørlykhaug invites us to confront the deep, difficult emotions -- love,..
The COVID-19 pandemic changed the way we work for good. Can it also change it for the better? Consultant Patty McCord reviews four key insights employers and employees alike gleaned from their shift to working from home -- and shares how companies can..
When you report an emergency in the US, police, firefighters or paramedics answer the call. What if mental health professionals responded, too? Colorado State Representative Leslie Herod shares a straightforward and research-backed approach that..
Calls for authenticity at work ask for passionate people with diverse, fresh perspectives who challenge old ways of thinking. But too often workplace culture fails to support the authenticity of professionals of color and other underrepresented..
When personal relationships and ideological differences collide, the result can lead to strained relations -- or even years of silence and distance. Actor Betty Hart offers an alternative to cold shoulders and haughty hellos: compassion, and a chance..
On his first day as president, Joe Biden signed a letter of acceptance that set in motion the 30-day process for the United States to re-join the Paris Agreement on climate. On the day the US returns to the accord, John Kerry, the US Special Envoy for..
Your teeth carry secrets: centuries of history about your ancestors, from where they lived to what they ate and where they traveled. Bioarchaeologist Carolyn Freiwald traces the story of human migration across the Americas -- from Mayan royalty and..
Aliens have invaded ancient history: they've cropped up in humanity's past through popular television and movies, displacing facts with absurd yet commonplace beliefs like "aliens built the pyramids." Archaeologist Sarah Kurnick illustrates why these..
What if everything in your life was randomized: from the food you ate to the things you did and the places you traveled? Computer scientist Max Hawkins created algorithms to make decisions like these for him -- and got hooked on the experience for two..
In the grand scheme of history, modern reality is a bizarre exception when compared to the worlds of ancient, precolonial and Indigenous civilizations, where myths ruled and gods roamed, says historian Greg Anderson. So why do Westerners today think..
What if we could we use biology to restore our balance with nature without giving up modern creature comforts? Advocating for a new kind of environmentalism, scientist and entrepreneur Emily Leproust rethinks modern sustainability at the molecular..
What does it take to be a pro gamer? Esports expert William Collis charts the rise of the multibillion-dollar competitive gaming industry and breaks down three skills needed to master video games like Fortnite, League of Legends and Rocket League. And..
Is art worth it? "Hell yeah," says graphic novelist R. Alan Brooks -- art has the power to scare dictators, inspire multitudes and change hearts and minds across the world. Reflecting on his journey to become an artist at a time when the world felt..
When catastrophe strikes, art prevails -- and has done so for centuries. In this fascinating talk, writer and director Cara Greene Epstein places the closing of theaters during the coronavirus pandemic in a historical context, exploring how we can use..
Centuries of inequality can't be solved with access to technology alone -- we need to connect people with training and support too, says tech inclusionist 'Gbenga Sesan. Sharing the work behind the Paradigm Initiative, a social enterprise in Nigeria..
How do you get the environment to the top of everyone's priority list? You can't, says climate advocate Angela Francis -- but you can get them to care about improving their lives. In this pragmatic talk, she shares her playbook for helping even the..
The abrupt shift to online learning due to COVID-19 rocked the US education system, unearthing many of the inequities at its foundation. Educator Nora Flanagan says we can reframe this moment as an opportunity to fix what's long been broken for..
Democracy needs an update -- one that respects and engages citizens by involving them in everyday political decisions, says writer and researcher Max Rashbrooke. He outlines three global success stories that could help move democratic systems forward..
As the founder of a startup, Tracy Young often worried that employees and investors valued male CEOs more -- and that being a woman compromised her position as a leader. In this brave, personal talk, she gives an honest look at the constraints women..
Corporations and big business have wrecked the environment, but disadvantaged communities living in "sacrifice zones" -- urban areas heavily polluted and poisoned by industry -- are paying the price, says climate justice leader Angela Mahecha Adrar...
After a terminal cancer diagnosis upended 12 years of remission, all Elaine Fong's mother wanted was a peaceful end of life. What she received instead became a fight for the right to decide when. Fong shares the heart-rending journey to honor her..
What if tiny microparticles could help us solve the world's biggest problems in a matter of minutes? That's the promise -- and magic -- of quantum computers, says Matt Langione. Speaking next to an actual IBM quantum computer, he explains how these..
What drives society's understanding of right and wrong? In this thought-provoking talk, futurist Juan Enriquez offers a historical outlook on what humanity once deemed acceptable -- from human sacrifice and public executions to slavery and eating meat..
Humanity now has incredible power to shape nature and the Earth: the power to destroy and the power to repair, says sustainability champion and UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner. In this action-oriented talk, Steiner shows how this power is putting our..
You know how resolutions often go: you set a goal and start strong ... then the motivation runs out and feelings of frustration and shame creep in. The struggle is real -- but what if it doesn't have to be? Sociologist Christine Carter shares a simple..
How do companies like SpaceX make sudden breakthroughs on decades-old challenges? Emerging tech expert Antoine Gourévitch explains how deep tech -- a new approach to innovation that merges science, engineering and design thinking -- is unlocking..
What if we could better understand the world's biggest challenges simply by looking at a map? Jack Dangermond, a pioneer in geographic information system (GIS) technology that powers the digital maps people around the world use every day, speaks with..
Significant pieces of the globe are literally not on the map: they're missing from the most widely used mapping platforms, like Google Street View, leaving communities neglected of vital services and humanitarian aid. In this globetrotting talk,..
How do the world's best leaders and visionaries earn trust? They don't just present data -- they also tell great stories. Leadership consultant Karen Eber demystifies what makes for effective storytelling and explains how anyone can harness it to..
What's the best way to make a good point? Organizational psychologist Niro Sivanathan offers a fascinating lesson on the "dilution effect," a cognitive quirk that weakens our strongest cases -- and reveals why brevity is the true soul of persuasion.
Backed by research and personal anecdotes, Spanish professor Anna Babel reveals the intricate relationship between language and culture, showing how social categories and underlying biases influence the way we hear, regard and, ultimately, judge each..
In a rich conversation full of practical insights, former Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard and former Finance Minister of Nigeria Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala reflect on their experiences as women leaders in positions of global power -- and share six..
Fairness matters ... to both people and primates. Sharing priceless footage of capuchin monkeys responding to perceived injustice, primatologist Sarah Brosnan explores why humans and monkeys evolved to care about equality -- and emphasizes the..