From blackbirds, beavers and beetles to tawny owls, natterjack toads and lemon slugs, every day of the year, winter or summer, in every corner of the British Isles, there's plenty to see if you know where -- and how -- to look. The Springwatch star’s books include The Bumper Book of Nature and Tweet of the Day.
What are the benefits to society of an unpolluted environment? Donna Mullen, a director at The Irish Environmental Network discusses this and their current Constitutional Campaign.
If we are to increase social mobility, redress economic inequality and create a balanced and fair distribution of wealth and opportunity, we need to understand the roots of the problems. Three recent books by members of the LSE’s new International Inequalities Institute aim to do this. Mike Savage is the author of Social Class in the 21st Century, looking at the way new class divides have opened up in the UK, with his work generating the Class Calculator that became a viral phenomenon in 2013. John Hills is the author of Good Times, Bad Times: The Welfare Myth of Them and Us, which uses vignettes of families and how they are affected by inequality, the welfare state and austerity over their lives alongside results of large-scale data analysis. Laura Bear specialises in the anthropology of the economy, and is the author of Navigating Austerity, which tells the story of how austerity policies resulting from seemingly technocratic accounting decisions have dramatically changed the lives of those living and working on the Hooghly River in India. The authors discuss parallels between their findings, and exchange thoughts on how inequality can be challenged by public debate and policy.
Three young female scientists who are recipients of the University of Cambridge’s most prestigious scholarship, the Gates Cambridge Scholarship, talk about their research. Julia Fan Li is director of the Global Health Investment Fund, which funds research and development for some of the most pressing global health challenges; Divya Venkatesh researches African sleeping sickness and does cross-disciplinary work in biotechnology; Alexandra Grigore works on an innovative fingerprint identity system for accessing medical records in developing countries.
The peerless connoisseur and wine writer, author of Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Book and co-author of The World Atlas of Wine,savours his craft and tastes and introduces Royal Tokaji.
Join Gill Lewis, bestselling author of Skyhawk and Moonbear, and novelist Julia Green as they talk about their new books, Scarlet Ibis and Seal Island. They share lots of interesting animal facts and stories about how animals bring people together in some very special places.
What and who do we trust with our sense of nationhood? The NHS, the BBC, the PM, the EU? The new chair of the National Trust has been a CEO and board director of many of Britain’s most successful international companies, and he owns the British Pathé Film Archive. He discusses the ideas of ownership, national identity, the interplay of the public, private and third sectors, and the ethical concerns that drive business in an age of social media.
The Fourth Revolution: How the Infosphere Is Reshaping Human Reality
As the boundaries between life online and offline break down, we become seamlessly connected to each other and surrounded by smart, responsive objects. We are all becoming integrated into an ‘infosphere’. Personas we adopt on social media, for example, feed into our real lives so that we begin to live in ‘onlife’. Following those led by Copernicus, Darwin and Freud, this metaphysical shift represents nothing less than a fourth revolution. Floridi is Professor of Philosophy and Ethics of Information at the University of Oxford. Chaired by Timandra Harkness.
In a time of international turbulence and insecurity; a time when the world is seeing migrations of people escaping from the immediate terrors of war and the disruptions of climate change; at a time of multiple and fluid identities, the novelist from Bangladesh interrogates the notion of national borders. Where do you draw the line? She re-imagines the walls and checkpoints as places of welcome and refuge. Anam is the author of A Golden Age, The Good Muslim and The Bones of Grace. Chaired by Oliver Balch.
Ideas about states of emergency went back to the politics of Ancient Rome in which it was said that ‘necessity knows no law’. This idea took on a series of different meanings during the early modern period and was employed by the Jacobins during the invasion scare of 1793–94. In 1848 the idea was employed again to justify emergency rule after the June uprising in Paris, but in its later usages, particularly by Marx, the idea was inverted. It was no longer emergency that justified dictatorship. Rather, dictatorship was posited as a desirable outcome in a transition to new forms of society.
Hanif Kureishi, CBE, is an English playwright, screenwriter and filmmaker, novelist and short story writer. In 2008, The Times included Kureishi in their list of ‘50 greatest British writers since 1945’. The themes of his work have touched on topics of race, nationalism, immigration and sexuality. He is the author of many celebrated books such as The Buddha Of Suburbia, the script of the film My Beautiful Laundrette and his recent novel Something To Tell You. He talks to Rosie Boycott.
Event in English
When long-standing dictatorships fall and democracies are born, without economic support these countries will struggle. And when they do, it can breed extremism. We need a Marshall Plan for these countries to ensure that they are economically supported. Former Maldives High Commissioner Farah Faizal and the UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran talk to international human rights lawyer Philippe Sands.