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UNSW Centre for Ideas


Off the cuff and unfiltered, live talks are where you hear the content you can’t Google.

The UNSW Centre for Ideas presents a thought-provoking program of events and digital content from the globe’s leading thinkers.  As we grapple with questions surrounding climate change, technological disruption and global politics, a program which provides a platform for public debate and the sharing of knowledge, that is also open to everyone, is crucial.

In 2019, the Centre for Ideas welcomed international best-selling author Margaret Atwood to the Sydney Opera House and former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard to the Sydney Town Hall. In venues at UNSW Sydney’s Kensington campus, the Centre has hosted public talks with psychologist Paul Bloom, artificial intelligence expert Toby Walsh, award-winning New York Times reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones, illustrious philosopher Daniel Dennett and former Australian of the Year and professor of quantum physics, Michelle Simmons.

Together with The Ethics Centre, the Centre for Ideas presented the Festival of Dangerous Ideas (FODI) in 2018. The Festival has been a champion of courageous public conversations and this commitment to provide a platform for debate of all kinds aligns perfectly with the Centre’s ethos. The 2018 FODI program featured provocative orators such as Germaine GreerStephen Fry and Pankaj Mishra.

In 2019, the UNSW Centre for Ideas launched UNTHINKABLE, a series of talks exploring the questions we haven’t asked, the futures we can avoid and the realities we are yet to consider. The series presented prominent international voices including, Monica LewinskyReza Aslan and Mona Eltahawy.