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5 speakers 15 minutes each
Mon 30th Apr 2012
Jonah Lehrer is an American author and journalist who writes on the topics of psychology, neuroscience, and the relationship between science and the humanities. He is the author of two books, Proust Was a Neuroscientist (2007) and How We Decide (2010). He has written for Wired, Scientific American Mind, National Public Radio’s Radiolab aswell as The New Yorker, Nature, Seed, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and The Boston Globe. His third book Imagine: How Creativity Works was published by Canongate books in 2012.
Ben Okri is a Nigerian poet and novelist considered one of the finest African writers within the postcolonial tradition. In 1991 he was awarded the Booker prize for his novel The Famished Road. Other fiction includes Astonishing the Gods (1995); Dangerous Love (1996), which was awarded the Premio Palmi (Italy) in 2000; In Arcadia (2002) and Starbook (2007). A collection of poems, An African Elegy, was published in 1992, and an epic poem, Mental Flight, in 1999. He published a collection of essays, A Way of Being Free, in 1997. Ben is a Vice-President of the English Centre of International PEN, a member of the board of the Royal National Theatre, and was awarded an OBE in 2001. In 2009 he published Tales of Freedom bringing together poetry and story. His latest book is Wild, his first collection of poetry in more than a decade.
Judith Kerr was born in Berlin, but came to England with her family when she was twelve after escaping the Nazis and travelling through Switzerland and France as a young girl. She wrote about her early life in her autobiographical trilogy Out of the Hitler Time. Judith studied at the Central School of Art and later worked as a scriptwriter for the BBC. She married the celebrated screenwriter Nigel Kneale in 1954, and left the BBC to look after their two children Matthew and Tacy, who inspired her first picture book, The Tiger Who Came to Tea. She is also famous for the Mog series of picture books about the Thomas’ family cat and the strange things she gets up to. Judith books have sold over 10 million copies. Judith lives in South London with her latest cat, Katinka. She received an OBE for services to literature and Holocaust education in 2012, and celebrated her 90th birthday in June 2013 with the publication Judith Kerr’s Creatures published by Harper Collins. Her most recent picture book is The Crocodile Under the Bed.
Scott Burnham has created and directed urban initiatives in 11 cities worldwide, ranging from design and strategy engagements to directing the $32 million cultural regeneration Urbis project in Manchester, UK and the Trust Design initiative for the Netherlands Institute for Design in Amsterdam. His projects include Urban Play, created for the city of Amsterdam, Bairro Criativo created for the city of Porto, Portugal, and the Made of Jesolo design initiative for Jesolo, Greater Venice, Italy. He recently returned home to Boston to create the Reprogramming the City initiative for the Boston Society of Architects, creating new opportunities in cities by repurposing existing urban infrastructure. He is the author of Finding the Truth in Systems: In Praise of Design Hacking and the forthcoming Reprogramming the City book. In recognition of his work, Burnham was made a Fellow of the Royal Society for Arts, Manufacturers and Commerce in London in 2010. More information about his work can be found at http://scottburnham.com.
Elif Shafak is Turkey's most-read woman writer and an award-winning novelist. Shafak blends Western and Eastern traditions of storytelling, bringing out the voices of women, minorities, subcultures, immigrants and global souls. Shafak is also a political commentator; she has written for several international daily & weekly publications, including The Guardian, The New York Times, Die Zeit, La Repubblica and The Independent.