The Lavin Agency Speakers Bureau

A speakers bureau that represents the best original thinkers,
writers, and doers for speaking engagements.

Our Greatest Tool for Solidarity and Change? Education (3:00)

Two New AI Talks from the TED Mainstage: Lavin speakers on Education, the Brain, and New Technologies. Watch Now!

At TED this year, Lavin speakers Nita Farahany and Sal Khan made waves and spurred endless conversation. Unsurprisingly, their talks centered on the fast-changing conversation around Artificial Intelligence. Both talks are now available to watch!

HBCUs have been underfunded for decades. A history of higher education tells us why

Racial Equality and the Future of Education (20:04)

One Way to Decrease Bias in Education and Improve Student Success (3:18)

“It’s Not Cheating” – Using ChatGPT as a Tool in Education (2:15)

Bill Strickland’s education revolution

Assistant Professor of Education

How Khan Academy Is Changing the Rules of Education

How Bill Gates’ Favorite Teacher Wants to Disrupt Education

One Man, One Computer, 10 Million Students: How Khan Academy Is Reinventing Education

Sex education is too important to be left to parents

ChatGPT Will Upend Education and That’s Not a Bad Thing (2:30)

The Importance of Race Education (5:46)

Managing Failure in Education (3:42)

Higher Education is Unfair – But the Stakes Truly Matter (5:34)

How Education Went from Enabling Social Mobility to Preventing It (1:09)

TED: The One World School House: Education Reimagined

Building A More Equitable Society with Sunlight, Art, and Education: Bill Strickland on PBS NewsHour

Bill Strickland grew up in a rough neighborhood. He estimates that 30% of his friends “ended up dead or in the penitentiary by the time they were 30 years old.” But a chance encounter with an art teacher and a pottery wheel put him on a lifelong journey of learning—one that he’s now replicating with his […]

Organic Education

Building a Community Through Education

The Importance of Race Education

The Great Disconnect in Modern Education

New Technology, the Future, and Education

How Education Went from Enabling Social Mobility to Preventing It

Higher Education is Unfair—But the Stakes Truly Matter

Managing Failure in Education

The One World School House: Education Reimagined

New York Times Bestselling Author Paul Tough Explores the Glaring Injustices of Higher Education

How did American colleges and universities go from being a powerful engine for social mobility, to a mighty force against it? In his explosive book The Inequality Machine, Paul Tough combines deep, authoritative reporting with the vivid stories of students themselves, to reveal where higher education went wrong.   For a long time, the relationship […]

Reimagining Higher Education in Response to COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has created the largest disruption of education systems in history. Not only that, but this crisis is exacerbating pre-existing education disparities for many of the most vulnerable students. How are higher education institutions carrying on with teaching during this socio-economic, cultural and health crisis, and what do we know about the future of […]

Paul Tough Talks to PBS’ Amanpour & Co., on Education Inequality and His New Book, The Years That Matter Most

Bestselling author Paul Tough sat down with Michel Martin on PBS to discuss how inequality and its widespread effects have come to define higher education. His most recent book, The Years That Matter Most explores this phenomenon in heartbreaking detail. Today's American students a jaw-dropping $1.5 trillion in student loans—making the average per student nearly […]

Learn from the Best: Daniel Lerner Joins Outlier, an Online Education Platform from the MasterClass Creators

MasterClass brought us online classes taught by some of the world’s greatest minds. Now, Outlier brings us University-level courses from some of the world’s best educators. Daniel Lerner, a mastermind of positive psychology, joins the platform that’s changing the future of higher education.  The Intro to Psychology course offered by Outlier, the offshoot of MasterClass, […]

Reforming Education: Top Ten Teaching and Learning Speakers

From boosting economic growth, to living healthier and happier lives, the benefits of education are rich and plenty. Lavin’s Top Ten Teaching and Learning Speakers address how we can reform our public institutions, deepen our knowledge, increase productivity, and ultimately, achieve more success.   With a New York Times bestselling book and Viral TED talk […]

Khalil Gibran Muhammad: Race, Education, and Rewriting the Legacy of the Invisible Man

“If we only search for a narrative that is most convenient to us, then we ourselves may be part of this nation’s going over the cliff,” says new Lavin speaker and Harvard professor Khalil Gibran Muhammad. Obscuring the nastier parts of American history may seem politically correct—but it also denies truths that encourage social growth. Khalil […]

Closing the Education Gap: Paul Tough’s New Atlantic Feature

To education speaker Paul Tough, America's schools are in dire trouble unless our low-income students catch up to their more privileged classmates. Tough’s latest effort, drawing insight from his upcoming book Helping Children Succeed (May 24), is an article for The Atlantic called “How Kids Learn Resilience.” In it, he stresses that a set of noncognitive […]

Reinventing Education with Sal Khan’s Khan Lab School: A New Profile in WIRED

This week, in “The Tech Elite’s Quest to Reinvent School in Its Own Image,” WIRED writes an in-depth profile of the colorful, optimistic, and tech-friendly world of Khan Lab School. That’s Salman Khan’s “educational R&D lab in Mountain View” that “eschews most of the traditional trappings of US education.” After founding the transformative Khan Academy […]

Teaching Is Built, Not Built-In: Education Speaker Elizabeth Green

What makes an incredible teacher—the kind that sticks out as an actor of change or an awakening in each of us? Those telling education speaker Elizabeth Green, bestselling author of Building a Better Teacher: How Teaching Works (and How to Teach it to Everyone), that it’s the result of magic or innate ability will be […]

Bill Strickland’s Education Revolution: Financial Times

As a “black kid growing up in a bad neighbourhood” in Pittsburgh in the 1960s, Bill Strickland understood all about the hopelessness of the ghetto. Running away from an angry cop or hitching a ride from a friend in a stolen car could wreck your life in an instant and forever. But Strickland’s life was […]

A New Learning Model: Why Salman Khan Is “A True Education Pioneer”

Is it possible to totally rethink our current education model? “My argument is yes,” education speaker Salman Khan says in an interview. “And not only can we, and is it kind of a good idea, it's actually happening.” From its humble beginnings as a means to tutor his family members, to the now thousands of […]

The National: How Education Speaker Salman Khan Revolutionized Learning

How can teachers wipe that bored and confused look off students' faces this coming school year? Salman Khan, an education speaker recently profiled on The National, has a big idea that's radicalizing education. His massively popular YouTube tutorials and successful Khan Academy approach education and teaching in a whole new way. Rather than explaining things […]

Learning About Learning: Review of a Keynote By Education Speaker Paul Tough

Paul Tough delivered an educational—and quite funny!—keynote speech yesterday at the K-12 Summer Initiative conference in Toronto. Drawing from the material in his highly talked about book, How Children Succeed, Tough had the full house of educators busily taking notes on the hidden power of character. Drawing together research that isn't often connected, the education […]

Bill Gates On How Salman Khan’s Online Academy Is The Future Of Education

Bill Gates has always been an advocate of Salman Khan's tech-savvy approach to learning. Recently, the Microsoft co-founder gave a talk about the future of education—and why The Khan Academy will be more relevant in the classroom than ever before. That's because Gates sees the traditional big-lecture format falling by the wayside. Thanks to remote […]

Not Every Failure Is A Disaster: Education Speaker Paul Tough

For too long, schools have focused on what education speaker Paul Tough calls “the cognitive hypothesis.” In his recent appearance on TVO (hosted by Lavin speaker Allan Gregg) Tough dismissed the belief that cognitive intelligence is the sole determinant of academic success. In How Children Succeed, he compiled a breadth of research proving that character […]

Humble & Engaging:Sal Khan Gives An Education Speech at MIT

Education speaker Salman Khan, founder of the Khan Academy, recently traveled to his alma mater to deliver a keynote. A graduate of MIT back in 1998, Khan felt right at home on the stage. In the talk, Khan discussed his journey with the Khan Academy and what it meant for the future of learning. He received […]

Education Speaker Sal Khan Inspires Teachers To “Flip Their Classrooms”

In his breakthrough book, The One World School House, education speaker Salman Khan encouraged teachers around the world to “flip the classroom.” And recently, several instructors in both Wyoming and Idaho have incorporated his Khan Academy lecture videos into the curriculum. Injecting his accessible online videos into the traditional class material allows students to learn […]

Global Philanthropy Forum: Sal Khan’s “Game Changing” Education Speech

If education is a crucial factor in ensuring the youth of today are empowered to create meaningful change in the future, how do we make their schooling relevant to them? That's what popular education speaker and Khan Academy founder Salman Khan discussed at the 2013 Global Philanthropy Forum Conference. Referred to as “a game changer […]

Master Concepts Before Moving On: Education Speaker Salman Khan

“Instead of holding fixed how long you have to learn something, when you learn it, and the variable component being how well you learn it—we should do it the other way around,” education speaker Salman Khan says in a recent college keynote at University of California Berkeley. “The variable component should be when you get […]

Closing The Skills Gap: Education Speaker Salman Khan on Charlie Rose [VIDEO]

As education speaker Salman Khan tells Charlie Rose, we don't only have a skills gap in the workforce, but a “signaling gap” as well. On the one hand, there are people who do not have the credentials needed to be employable (the skills gap). On the other hand, there are people who do have the […]

Beyond The Classroom: Education Speaker Salman Khan In Fast Company

While there's something to be said for tradition, education speaker Salman Khan tells Fast Company that the reasons why our education system still follows a classroom-based lecture format simply don't hold up anymore. The founder of The Khan Academy was recently featured in the magazine in a conversation with Katie Salen, founder of the Institute […]

What Is The Cognitive Hypothesis? Education Speaker Paul Tough [VIDEO]

“The conventional wisdom that's governed our thinking about child development and education for the past couple of decades has been misguided,” education speaker Paul Tough explains in his keynote about educational knowledge. “We've been emphasizing the wrong skills and abilities in our kids and we've been using the wrong strategies to develop those skills and […]

Education: The Economist Raves About How Children Succeed By Paul Tough

Why is it that some children do so well in school while others do not? In education speaker Paul Tough's book, How Children Succeed, he provides groundbreaking research to answer that very question. And, as The Economist notes, the book is “provocative, ambitious, and elegantly written.” The article mentions that previous efforts to close the […]

Education Speaker Paul Tough: How Malleable Is Your Intelligence? [VIDEO]

Do you think your IQ is malleable? That is, do you think that the level of intelligence you're born with is what you're stuck with for life? Or can it be improved? As education speaker Paul Tough told an audience during a recent keynote, it is very difficult to change your IQ after around age […]

Take Ownership Of Your Education: Salman Khan In Psychology Today

Education speaker Salman Khan has received a lot of press—and an equal amount of praise—for the revolutionary model of learning he employs with his video-based online school The Khan Academy. In a new interview in Psychology Today, Khan explains that his goal is to help students take control of their learning. Instead of learning a […]

The Secretary of Education Really Likes How Children Succeed by Paul Tough

As 2012 draws to a close, The Wall Street Journal asked some prominent figures to share their favorite books from the past year. How Children Succeed by education speaker Paul Tough was listed as recommended reading by Mr. Arne Duncan—a recommendation that carries some extra weight given Duncan's role as the Secretary of Education. Duncan […]

Improve The System, Don’t Demolish It: Education Speaker Salman Khan [VIDEO]

“I'm a big believer in more organic change,” education speaker Salman Khan said in a keynote speech at Cal Poly Pomona this past week. Despite being a leader in the education sector thanks to his work with The Khan Academy and his book The One World Schoolhouse, Khan says he doesn't want to be seen as […]

A 1,000% Return: Education Speaker Salman Khan On The Cover of Forbes

“The numbers get really crazy when you look at the impact per dollar,” education speaker Salman Khan says of the work he's doing with the Khan Academy. “If you put any reasonable value on it, say $10 a year—and keep in mind we serve most students better than tutoring—and you are looking at, what, a […]

A Keynote by Education Speaker Paul Tough: Adversity Builds Character & Success

In his keynote speech at the KIPP (Knowledge Is Power Program) Conference, education speaker Paul Tough posed a provocative theory: “what if by protecting our kids, we are doing them more harm than good?” The author of How Children Succeed argues that the development of character traits such as grit and self-control are more important […]

Nic Kristoff on Education Speaker Paul Tough’s “Important New Book”

In his latest New York Times Op-Ed, Nicholas Kristoff calls education speaker Paul Tough's How Children Succeed “an important new book,” adding: “Long may this book dwell on the best-seller lists!” Tough's book brings together “decades of fascinating research” on the long-standing “nature vs nurture” debate and its effect on childhood development, Kristoff explains in […]

The Power of Character: Education Speaker Paul Tough on This American Life

Children are our future—and thanks to the work of education speaker Paul Tough, and his unique perspective on how to help more children succeed, that future is beginning to look a little brighter. Tough recently appeared on NPR's This American Life to discuss the theories presented in his bestselling book How Children Succeed. Test results […]

The One World Schoolhouse: Salman Khan’s New Book Rethinks Education

“The [Khan] Academy owned a PC, $20 worth of screen-capture software, and an $80 pen tablet,” Salman Khan writes in his new book The One World Schoolhouse: Education Reimagined. “The faculty, engineering team, support staff and administration consisted of exactly one person: me. The budget consisted of my savings.”  Salman Khan and his virtual school, […]

Education Speaker Paul Tough: Character Trumps Intelligence

Lavin is thrilled to introduce our new education speaker, Paul Tough, author of the instant New York Times bestseller How Children Succeed. In his much-lauded book, Tough tackles the difficult and evergreen question of measuring success in school: how can we determine which students are on the way to setting the foundations for a good […]

Flipping the Classroom: Time Profiles Education Speaker Salman Khan

A recent Time magazine article on education speaker Salman Khan reveals his plan to “flip” the traditional classroom model, and to empower teachers to give personalized attention to individual students. Khan, who founded the popular Khan Academy, is relying on the support of the Internet, as well as the cooperation of educators everywhere. “In the […]

On 60 Minutes: Salman Khan’s Personal Journey to Change Education

This month, 60 Minutes ran an inspiring feature on why Salman Khan—founder of Khan Academy—decided to quit his job as a hedge fund analyst and devote all his efforts to revamping education, one online video at a time. The segment explains that Khan’s famous archive of thousands of comprehensible web lessons, which are changing the […]

Salman Khan: Changing Education, One Online Video at a Time

Lavin’s newest speaker is Salman Khan—a man Fast Company says is “on a path to become a central figure in national education-policy debates.” Khan is the founder of the Khan Academy, a non-profit that provides free, high-quality education to “anyone, anywhere” in the world through its library of over 3,000 online videos. The videos are […]

At the STEM to STEAM Forum, John Maeda Offers a New Educational Model

World-renowned artist, designer, computer scientist and educator John Maeda continues his push to include Art into an American education system seemingly focused only on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math better—known as the STEM model; he would like to turn it into the STEAM model. At the recent STEM to STEAM Forum, spearheaded by Maeda and […]

The State Must Provide

The Definitive History of Racial Inequality in American Higher Education

Adam Harris

Higher education could be a powerful force for equity and democracy—but it must face up to its history of racial injustice first.

The One World Schoolhouse

Education Reimagined

Oil and Honey

The Education of an Unlikely Activist

ChatGPT is Disrupting Every Industry. Nine Speakers on What’s Next

Generative AI is already changing the way we think about work, the economy, investments, education, and society at large. It promises to be more disruptive than the internet itself. Lavin has been exploring the potential of AI for years, and we are proud to share the insights of our leading thinkers.

Sales Agent

Are you the right person in the wrong job? Have you stayed up all night debating politics, music, civil rights and social justice, old philosophies, new technologies, the media, the economy—or, better yet, the intersection of them all? A real debate where minds get changed, including your own? Yes? Then maybe we’re the home you […]


THE LAVIN AGENCY is the world’s largest intellectual talent agency, representing leading thinkers for speaking engagements, personal appearances, consulting, and endorsements. Our Team “We have a remarkable team here, and one reason is that the staff is very diverse, politically and intellectually. I like people who want to contribute to the debate. At The Lavin […]

Innovate for Communities, Not Individuals: David Robertson on How Cherokee Values Help You Innovate Better

Nobody lives in a vacuum. Our behaviors, needs, and desires are highly influenced by the people around us. So why does so much of our innovation center solely around the individual? MIT innovation expert David Robertson knows that if we can tap into the communities we serve, we’ll be able to develop a framework of […]


I want to book a speaker … What is The Lavin Agency? For over 30 years, The Lavin Agency speakers bureau has helped a diverse range of clients find the perfect speakers for conferences, keynotes, workshops, and more. We represent authors, scientists, business leaders, humanitarians, politicians, economists, and other remarkable people making the world a […]

Lavin Speakers at SXSW 2022

The legendary South By Southwest conference—an essential collection of film fests, conferences, sessions, and networking opportunities that spotlight creativity globally—is back for 2022, and Lavin’s speakers are showing up in a big way. Here’s a who’s who of the groundbreaking Lavin talent you’ll find on the SXSW stage: Jessica Nordell’s brilliant career as a science […]

Anna Gifty Opoku-Agyeman Unites Bold and Brave Voices to Uplift Black America

Anna Gifty Opoku-Agyeman is the editor of The Black Agenda: the first ever book to bring together dozens of Black writers, scholars, and leaders to solve today’s most pressing social issues, from economics to education to climate change. The Black Agenda “will challenge what you think is possible” (Ibram X. Kendi, New York Times bestselling […]

Anna Unites Bold and Brave Voices to Uplift Black America

Anna Gifty Opoku-Agyeman is behind The Black Agenda: the first ever book to bring together dozens of Black writers, scholars, and leaders to solve today’s most pressing social issues, from economics to education to climate change. The Black Agenda “will challenge what you think is possible” (Ibram X. Kendi, New York Times bestselling author). America needs help. […]

Nikole Hannah-Jones

There isn’t a beat you can cover in America—education, housing—where race is not a factor.

Salman Khan

All children deserve access to a free, world-class education.

Paul Tough

The power of higher education to change a student’s life is strongly linked to their socioeconomic status.

A Reckoning of Racist Ideologies: The Lavin Agency Welcomes Psychiatrist Jonathan Metzl

We are only just beginning to understand the deep impacts of racial resentment—including its fatal consequences on public health. In the era of Donald Trump, many lower- and middle-class white Americans were drawn to politicians who pledged to make their lives great again. But as Lavin’s newest speaker physician JONATHAN METZL shows in his explosive […]

Books to Read This Fall

Fall is upon us, so we here at Lavin wanted to bring you a selection of our favorite reads to grace your bookshelves this season. From riveting non-fiction that will change the way you see the world, to practical guidebooks for finding success in an unpredictable climate, there’s something here for everyone. Sukhinder Singh Cassidy’s […]

Liberty & Justice for All: A Lavin Exclusive

The United States has historically been a nation in deep denial of its own past. But today, the country—indeed, the entire world—is facing a racial reckoning of epic proportions. Between a global pandemic that disproportionately affects Black communities, the tragic deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, and a growing White Power movement, the staggering […]

The Top 10 Social Activist Speakers Changing the World Today

Lavin’s Top 10 Social Activist Speakers are the thought-leaders and advocates pushing for a better world. Whether it’s through art, history, education, or humanitarian efforts, these speakers are not only calling for change, but actively making it happen.  LaToya Ruby Frazier: LaToya Ruby Frazier treats art as activism. With her powerful images of post-industrial towns […]

Why ‘Cartooning’ Political Opponents is Bad for Us: Jay Van Bavel for the BBC

We tend to reduce our political opponents to caricatures and stereotypes, a practice that is further reinforced by social media. And though it may feel satisfying to call one another out publicly, the effects could be dangerous. Psychology professors Jay Van Bavel and Dominic Packer investigate for the BBC.  Political polarization may increase voter turnout, […]

Lavin’s Top Race Speakers Explore the Past and Present, and Share Their Solutions for the Future

As we enter a new decade, there’s a lot to look forward to—and a lot left to fight for. And unfortunately, racism isn’t a relic of shameful times past—it’s still very much alive today. Here at The Lavin Agency, our Top Race Speakers tackle this tough topic from all angles—public policy, pop culture, education, and […]

Flikshop Founder and CEO Marcus Bullock Collaborates with Apple

Marcus Bullock is the creator of Flikshop, an ingeniously simple app that allows family members to connect with prisoners via short messages and photos. His entrepreneurial enterprise has proven so successful that he’s collaborating with Apple, as part of their Code with Apple series. At the age of 15, Marcus Bullock was sentenced to eight […]

Saving Local News: The New York Times profiles Elizabeth Green and The American Journalism Project

1,400 communities across the U.S. have lost a local newspaper in the last 15 years—a statistic that reveals the severity of the crisis independent press now faces. Inspired, Lavin speaker and journalist Elizabeth Green co-founded The American Journalism Project to support the nonprofit, local publications our democracy deserves.  The American Journalism Project announced its first […]

The AI Disruption: Martin Ford Explores Andrew Yang’s Surprising Campaign and Why it Matters

In a new op-ed, Martin Ford—acclaimed author of two books on the impact of AI on the labour market—explains why AI-driven automation should be a top-of-mind issue in the upcoming election, and why Andrew Yang is the only candidate willing to speak out about it.  “The Democratic Party’s agenda increasingly is being shaped by the […]

Marcus Bullock’s New TED Talk Already Over 500k Views in Under a Week

The new TED Talk from Marcus Bullock—founder and CEO of Flikshop, a tech startup with heart and a personal history—has already surpassed the 500k mark, in less than a week of being live. Bullock’s dramatic, inspiring story takes audiences on his incredible journey from behind bars to venture-backed; a man who made good and is […]

The Years That Matter Most—A New Book By New York Times Bestseller Paul Tough—Is Out Today

Who gets into college, who doesn’t, and why does it matter? Based on six years of reporting, education speaker Paul Tough’s hotly-anticipated new book explores how social mobility affects higher education—and what this means for America’s future generations.   In The Years That Matter Most, Tough shares true stories of students trying to find their […]

When did College Turn So Cruel? Paul Tough’s Upcoming Book Profiled in The New York Times

In The Years That Matter Most: How College Makes or Breaks Us, bestselling author Paul Tough re-evaluates the state of higher education across the United States. Does college still work? What are the flaws in our current system? And how can we do better?  “In an increasingly pessimistic country with fewer manufacturing jobs than decades ago […]

Anecdotes Aren’t Data: Psychologist Steven Pinker Calls for a Stronger Delineation Between Facts and Feelings

What is the one thing wrong with the world that you would change, and why? It’s a question posed by Harvard University to its faculty, in a new ongoing series. In it, professor Steven Pinker shares his desire to temper our cognitive biases with hard facts.   A president riling up citizens over the supposed […]

When Will AI-Driven Income Inequality Hit? A Conversation with AI Expert Ajay Agrawal and Vinod Khosla

Ajay Agrawal, AI Expert and Founder of the Creative Destruction Lab, sat down with billionaire venture capitalist Vinod Khosla for a conversation on the future of machine learning—and the social implications it will bring.  “Education is not the solution,” Vinod Khosla said, when discussing the impact of artificial intelligence on the economy and the labour […]

Anthony Jack’s Book The Privileged Poor Honored by Harvard University Press with the Thomas J. Wilson Memorial Prize

This year’s historic Thomas J. Wilson Memorial Prize goes to Anthony Jack for his first book, The Privileged Poor. Bestowed by Harvard University Press, the prize acknowledges an exemplary first book manuscript, and is judged for its outstanding style, content, and presentation. It also highlights the author’s special contribution into illuminating a major problem in […]

Grit Speaker Lauren Eskreis-Winkler Investigates the Motivational Benefits of Advice-Giving

Common wisdom would suggest that offering advice to those who are struggling is helpful to them. But findings from the University of Pennsylvania suggest the opposite is true. In fact, it is the actually person dispensing the advice who is benefiting most. Lauren Eskreis-Winkler reveals the surprising insights from her new study. Wharton post-doctoral researcher […]

Jamil Zaki Awarded PECASE: the Highest Honor Bestowed by the US Government to Scientists

Established in 1996, the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) acknowledges outstanding contributions in STEM education and community service. This year, Associate Professor of Psychology at Stanford University Jamil Zaki received the prestigious award. Much of Jamil Zaki’s research focuses on how we can build and strengthen our connections to one another […]

Lavin Speaker John Maeda Appointed Chief Experience Officer at Leading Digital Transformation Company

A leader in the world of design, technology, education, and computer science, John Maeda is one of Silicon Valley’s most revered names. Now, he’s spearheading design at Publicis Sapient—a digital consultancy firm—to guide legacy companies through the peaks and valleys of the digital revolution. As the Global Head of Computational Design at Automattic—the parent company […]

Two Humanitarian Leaders—The Dalai Lama and Lavin Speaker Bill Strickland—Meet to Discuss the Power of Supporting Youth

As the founder of Manchester Bidwell—a revolutionary center which gives the poor and underprivileged youth access to careers—Bill Strickland is a widely-recognized leader in the world of  philanthropy. He was recently invited by fellow philanthropic leader, the 14th Dalai Lama, to discuss  compassion, resiliency, and the radically transformative power of helping those who need it most.  Bill […]

Admission Isn’t Acceptance: Anthony Jack Reveals the Plight of Low-Income Kids at Ivy League Schools in The Privileged Poor

Even though the Ivy League has opened their doors to a more diverse student body, less privileged students still struggle. Drawing from his own experiences, as well as dozens of interviews with undergraduates at one of America’s most prestigious colleges, Anthony Jack’s The Privileged Poor (out now) reveals what happens to students who don’t have […]

Get to Know Lavin’s MacArthur “Geniuses”!

This year Titus Kaphar and Vijay Gupta join a whopping SIX other Lavin Speakers in receiving MacArthur “Genius” Grants—a prestigious honor awarded to those who are forging truly significant progress towards “building a more just, verdant and peaceful world.” Get to know Lavin’s “geniuses”: Titus Kaphar’s sculptures, paintings, and installations create new and striking ways […]

Nikole Hannah-Jones is “One of the country’s most distinctive and respected voices” says Columbia Journalism School Dean Steve Coll

Columbia Journalism School has awarded Nikole Hannah-Jones, investigative reporter and author of the upcoming book The Problem We All Live With, the 2018 John Chancellor Award for Excellence in Journalism. Hannah-Jones’ groundbreaking reporting on modern segregation in American schools has already earned her a collection of prestigious awards, including the MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship.  The John Chancellor […]

Anthropocene, the Latest Project from Renowned Photographer Edward Burtynsky, Opens Tomorrow

The Anthropocene is our current geological age, in which humans are the primary cause of permanent planetary change. It’s also the name of renowned photographer Edward Burtynsky’s latest project, a meditation (via film, exhibit, book and education program) on humanity’s massive, powerful reengineering of the planet. Opening tomorrow (Sept. 28) at the Art Gallery of […]

Transformative Organizational Change Isn’t Impossible. New Speaker Heather McGhee Has Done It and Can Show You How.

In the wake of two wrongful, racially motivated arrests in their store, Starbucks entrusted  HEATHER C. MCGHEE and her team at Demos to create and implement a groundbreaking racial bias training strategy. Now Lavin’s latest speaker, McGhee is a policy expert and natural storyteller who draws from her research and experience to help kickstart transformative […]

The Aging Population is Capable, Happy and Excited, Says Activist Ashton Applewhite. Marketers Barely Know This Demographic.

Misconceptions about our aging population abound. As Ashton Applewhite proves in This Chair Rocks—her celebrated anti-ageism manifesto—and her mainstage TED Talk, which garnered a standing ovation and over 1.2 million views, we barely know the aging demographic; they’re a consumer group far more capable, happy, and excited than socially constructed biases give them credit for.  […]

4 Speakers Who Will Empower You to Change Your Patterns of Action (And Stick To It)

Motivate your employees. Reduce your carbon footprint. Run a marathon. January is the month we want to figure out how to do better—with our time, our colleagues, and our creative endeavours. These four keynote speakers will inspire you to set goals, work through slumps, and make positive change that really sticks. Vijay Gupta On Healing Communities Through Music    […]

The Lavin Weekly: An Atlantic Interview, Fake News, Robot-Proof Kids, and What Really Caused the Agricultural Revolution

In this Lavin Weekly, Nikole Hannah-Jones’ Atlantic Interview; Derek Thompson talks fake news; Martin Ford is asked if a person can robot-proof their kid’s future; and Reza Aslan breaks down the agricultural revolution.  1.“Whether you have integrated communities or segregated communities, you have school segregation.”  The Atlantic Interview with Nikole Hannah-Jones came out this week. It’s enlightening and devastating […]

The Best Speakers. The Best Writers. Lavin Exclusives Lead The Best American Writing of 2017

2017 is winding down, which means “best of” lists are burning up the Internet. But what about something you can read when the snow knocks out your Wi-Fi? The annual Best American series are a cultural barometer representing the upper echelon of writing. This year, six of our speakers are in them—a literal bounty of excellent writing.  The Best American Series  >   […]

“Who is represented? Who is invisible?” A Public Sculpture by Titus Kaphar Confronts a University’s Past

Controversy around America’s public sculptures has swept the nation—how should such a complex legacy be represented? Enter Titus Kaphar, the visual artist and standing-O garnering TED speaker, whose newly unveiled campus sculpture has been described by The Atlantic as, “a bold, exquisite way to visually confront what research has revealed about Princeton’s roots in slavery.” The sculpture has been […]

Nikole Hannah-Jones Has Been Named a MacArthur Fellow for Her Reporting on Racial Resegregation in American Schools

Nikole Hannah-Jones’ investigations into the re-segregation of the American education system have earned her a National Magazine Award, the Peabody, the George Polk Award, and, today, a 2017 MacArthur Genius Grant Fellowship—a distinction awarded to those who are forging truly significant progress towards “building a more just, verdant and peaceful world.”    “When we look […]

A Town Wants to Secede From Its School District: Nikole Hannah-Jones’ NYT Mag Cover Story Probes the Return of Segregation

In her recent, rigorous, and heart-stopping cover story for The New York Times Magazine Education Issue, National Magazine Award-winner Nikole Hannah-Jones delivers a probing view into the black population of Jefferson County, Alabama, as they try to live freely in a town looking to resegregate the school systems.   

Repairing an Unequal Nation: Five Top Speakers on the Art of Change

Keynote speakers Khalil Gibran Muhammad, Nikole Hannah-Jones, Jeff Chang, Gabby Rivera, and Reza Aslan hail from the middle east to the midwest, but they all have one thing in common: an infectious desire to make the world a more peaceful and equitable place.  Khalil Gibran Muhammad: Professor of History, Race, and Public Policy at Harvard […]

Americans Are Losing Faith in Democracy. Political Theorist Yascha Mounk Explains Why and What We Can Do About It

Liberal democracies are dying, while far-right groups and authoritarian leaders are thriving. It’s a grim fact, but Harvard professor, writer, and new Lavin Speaker Yascha Mounk is hopeful in his engaging talks about why it’s happening, how it’s happening, and what every day citizens can do about it. The tale of liberal democracy’s demise is […]

Speaking Truth to Power: Though Their Activism Looks Different, These Speakers All Fight for Human Rights & Equality

“It couldn’t happen here, not in 2017.” This is the soothing delusion many of us have recited over the past year, but its potency is waning—and now it’s time to act. This week we look at five Lavin speakers—Jelani Cobb, Reza Aslan, Angie Thomas, Megan Phelps-Roper, and Matt Taibbi—who seek to transform the world through […]

The Future of Work: Four Speakers Take on the Promises and Problems of an Automated Workforce

In last week’s guest blog post, adaptation expert Amber Mac discussed the capacity of Artificial Intelligence to change future societies. This week, we look at three additional Lavin speakers—economist Daron Acemoglu, journalist Derek Thompson, and Rise of the Robots author Martin Ford, who each apply their diverse thinking to the timely question of the future of […]

LAVIN x TED2017: Meet the Talent Taking the Stage

The 2017 TED Conference is kicking off today in Vancouver, and nine members (comprising six mainstage presenters and TED Fellows) of the Lavin brain trust are there to speak in a diverse set of sessions that all center around the theme of this year’s conference: The Future You. Meet the people taking their timely messages west. Monday April […]

World-Renowned Economist Daron Acemoglu on Saving Jobs from A.I., Bridging the Partisan Divide, & Restoring Faith in Democracy

To leading economist Daron Acemoglu, our economic and political institutions need a dramatic overhaul. Automation maximizes profit but cuts middle-class jobs. Faith in Washington and Wall St. has crumbled. And politics is more partisan than ever. How can we hit the reset button on U.S. democracy? Acemoglu is one of the top 20 most cited economists […]

Funding Your Dreams: Meet Kickstarter Co-Founder Yancey Strickler

The Lavin Agency is pleased to welcome our newest exclusive keynote speaker, Kickstarter co-founder and CEO Yancey Strickler!  Strickler co-founded Kickstarter to help bring creative projects to life. In the process, he has started an important conversation about how companies can stick to their ideals, resist conformity, and contribute to the public good. “I think […]

A Classroom Divided: Nikole Hannah-Jones on School Segregation

It’s been 62 years since Brown v. Board of Education, but school segregation in America is very much alive. In a recent long-form feature for NYT Magazine, Nikole Hannah-Jones—winner of a 2015 George Polk Award for radio reporting for her This American Life story on school segregation—gives an intensely personal account of choosing a Brooklyn […]

Paul Tough’s Helping Children Succeed Now Available Online

Education speaker Paul Tough’s new book Helping Children Succeed is now available in its entirety online—gorgeously rendered with helpful graphics, charts, and embedded videos. If you’ve read Tough’s NYT bestseller How Children Succeed, Helping makes the perfect companion: a much-needed (and practical) exploration of how to overcome childhood adversity, both within the classroom and beyond. […]

Want to Help Children Succeed? Help Their Parents, Says Paul Tough

Last week, education speaker Paul Tough wrote a piece for The Atlantic called “How Kids Learn Resilience,” in which he champions the development of noncognitive skills—grit, optimism, self-control, among others—in children. The foundation for these skills is laid in our first few years of life, he argues; and for children raised in safe, nurturing environments, these […]

Passion and Perseverance: Angela Duckworth’s Grit Hits Stores Today

One of the most talked-about new books in education is Angela Duckworth’s Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, and it’s available for purchase today. The book is the culmination of years of research on the titular concept—an elusive blend of purpose and persistence that Duckworth believes may be paramount in determining high-level achievement. Since […]

For U.S. Poor, Geography Determines Longevity: Raj Chetty’s Health Inequality Study

Geography and life expectancy are linked—at least for America’s poorest people. A major new study released by The Health Inequality Project—led by Lavin speaker Raj Chetty, who acted as Corresponding Author and Principal Investigator—shows that where poor people live has a profound impact on how long they live. And while clearly distressing, the study also […]

First Look: Angela Duckworth’s New Book, Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance

What really drives success? Is it our families, our cultures, our upbringings? Our socio-economic status? Raw IQ, EQ, our genetics, even genius? According to renowned psychologist and education speaker Angela Duckworth, real achievement often comes down to “grit”: a special mixture of enthusiasm and determination that, as a concept, is redefining more than just education. In […]

Why ‘Grit’ Shouldn’t Be Graded: Angela Duckworth’s March NYT Op-Ed

Last week, psychology professor and education speaker Angela Duckworth wrote an op-ed in The New York Times addressing a problematic trend in education accountability systems—and one she worries that she may have contributed to, however inadvertently. Educators are now seeing the value in teaching emotional and social skills in school—a shift that acknowledges Duckworth’s groundbreaking research into the […]

Tom Wujec Talks on Disruption, Robo-Economics, & Information Technology

Tom Wujec—Chief Disruptor at Autodesk, and world-renowned innovator—dropped by The Lavin office in Toronto to speak about his current research, work, and keynote topics. In particular, he spoke about new disruptive technologies and creation processes: everything from the 3D printing of luxury goods to large-scale mapping software for city planners to innovations in dental surgery. New […]

New Video Showcases Jessica Jackley’s Entrepreneurial Spirit

Jessica Jackley—Kiva co-founder and author of Clay Water Brick—stopped by the University of Pennsylvania as an [email protected] guest lecturer. In this video interview (and podcast!), titled “Entrepreneurs Doing the Most with the Least,” Jackley shares her entrepreneurial journey, and, “more importantly … the incredible insight and wisdom that [she] encountered in unexpected entrepreneurs along the […]

Will Technology Make Your Job Redundant? Derek Thompson’s Atlantic Cover Story

Will you soon lose your job to a machine? Could new technology and disruptive innovation ultimately displace the majority of human labor? If so, what would this mean for our industries, institutions, and families? What will it mean for both our economic and psychological wellbeing? In his Atlantic cover story “A World Without Work,” Derek […]

Escaping Poverty? It’s All About Place: A Bracing New Study Co-Authored by Raj Chetty

A much-talked-about new study on poverty in America, co-authored by Lavin speaker Raj Chetty, reveals how hard it is for poor children in certain cities and towns (like Balitmore City) to climb the income ladder over the course of their lives. Place, it turns out, plays a major role in future earning potential. The New […]

Better and Faster by Jeremy Gutsche Has “Epic” Launch at SXSW

Innovation speaker Jeremy Gutsche launched his new book, Better and Faster: The Proven Path to Unstoppable Ideas, yesterday at SXSW Interactive. “The book launch was epic,” wrote Gutsche in an email to us yesterday afternoon. “1,000 people tweeting like mad, cheering extra loud. I gave about a hundred of them a high five before it […]

Lavin Agency Gives to Vijay Gupta’s Street Symphony & Jane Chen’s Embrace

In lieu of holiday gifts this year, The Lavin Agency is making donations to two organizations we believe in: Embrace Global and Street Symphony. Led by two exceptional Lavin speakers, these projects are making a real difference in our world. Embrace Global, co-founded by Jane Chen, is dedicated to advancing maternal and child health by […]

Why We Suck at Math: Lavin Speakers Add it Up in the Times

Math is having a moment. Recently, two Lavin speakers—Jordan Ellenberg and Elizabeth Green—topped the The New York Times' most-emailed articles list (No's 1 and 2, respectively) with stories on mathematics. They addressed why math matters, why most Americans are allergic to math, and how to teach it effectively, especially to students. In his Op-Ed, Ellenberg, […]

Why Are Rich Kids More Likely to Graduate? Paul Tough’s NYT Magazine Cover Story

In this week's New York Times Magazine cover story, education speaker Paul Tough takes a look at the graduation gap between advantaged and disadvantaged students at American universities. Who Gets to Graduate? focuses on an experiment at the University of Texas at Austin that is trying to find an answer to the question: “How, precisely, […]

Civil Rights Legend Minnijean Brown Trickey’s MLK Week Standing Ovation

At a recent Martin Luther King Jr. Week for Peace event, civil rights legend Minnijean Brown Trickey received a standing ovation after her keynote address. A member of the Little Rock Nine who helped desegregate public schools, she spoke about civil rights and Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy, telling the audience: “Dr. King asked us […]

A Speck in the Sea, on the Big Screen: Harvey Weinstein Buys Film Rights to Paul Tough’s NYT Mag Cover Story

Well, that didn't take long. Education speaker Paul Tough, best known for his bestselling book How Children Succeed, has landed a major film deal with The Weinstein Company. The rights to his recent New York Times Magazine story, “A Speck in the Sea,” about the rescue of fisherman John Aldridge, were snapped up by the production […]

Why Regular People Should Invest in Start-Ups: Jessica Jackley’s WSJ Op-Ed

Jessica Jackley knows a lot about start-ups. In a recent Wall Street Journal editorial, she writes about why she is in favor of new legislation that allows entrepreneurs raising startup capital (less than $1 million) to invite anyone to invest, including the general public. It's more inclusive, for one, she says—there's something inherently “wrong” about […]

Building Hope, One School at a Time: The Financial Times Profiles Bill Strickland

For thirty years, education speaker Bill Strickland has used his innovative arts and training centers to transform the lives of thousands of impoverished adults and teenagers. In a major Financial Times profile, which serves as a sweeping retrospective of his work, Strickland discusses his education centers and why he believes we can't rely solely on […]

Personal Finance: Salman Khan In A New Ad For The Khan Academy [VIDEO]

Salman Khan, an education speaker and founder of The Khan Academy, has helped millions of people around the world to sharpen their knowledge thanks to his online tutorials. While he's known today as the guy “flipping the classroom” and “revolutionizing education,” Khan actually started his career in finance. That's why his recent partnership with Bank […]

Next Big Thing: Why John Maeda Says Design Is More Important Than Tech

“Technology used to be the differentiating factor,” John Maeda says in a segment on Bloomberg TV's Next Big Thing. “Now we don't care anymore because design matters more than technology.” Maeda, popular design speaker and President of the Rhode Island School of Design, says that what we value in our devices has changed. It used […]

Record Number Of Millennials Still Living At Home: Speaker Derek Thompson

When unemployment rates started to fall, many experts thought young adults stuck in arrested development would finally move out of their parents' homes. Derek Thompson, a speaker on the Millennial generation, says that hasn't been the case. Despite three years of steadily decreasing unemployment, more than a third of Americans between 18 and 31 still […]

Derek Thompson: Why Going To College is (Still) Essential

Derek Thompson, a senior editor at The Atlantic, is an expert on the Millenial generation: the under-35 set that is taking longer than ever to finish school, get out of debt, and start their careers. In his articles and keynotes, Thompson explores the motivation behind—and complexities of—Millenial behavior. And, as a nice dovetail, he champions […]

Natural Partners: John Maeda Advocates For Combining Arts & Science

“Artists and scientists tend to approach problems with a similar open-mindedness and inquisitiveness,” John Maeda tells Scientific American, “they both do not fear the unknown, preferring leaps to incremental steps. They make natural partners.” The RISD president and popular design speaker sees the collaboration between artists and scientists as crucial for our future. “There is […]

Don’t Play It Safe: Big Data Speaker Jer Thorp On Starting Your Career

Jer Thorp didn't get to where he is today by playing it safe. The big data speaker and National Geographic Emerging Explorer carved his own path and took chances along the way. “It all started out of an act of rebellion,” Thorp says in National Geographic of how he started his career visualizing data. He […]

2013 Creativity 50: Cities Speaker Candy Chang Makes The Top 10

Cities speaker Candy Chang proves you don't need expensive, high-tech devices to transform public spaces. That's why she made the 2013 Creativity 50 list this year. Creativity is a website that features the best in design, advertising, and digital creativity. Chang made it into the top ten this year. “Candy Chang's art serves as a wake-up call […]

1 Billion Lessons: Salman Khan On The Khan Academy’s Success [VIDEO]

As education speaker Salman Khan has proven, YouTube can be used for much more than watching “cats playing piano.” It can, in fact, be a valuable tool for learning mathematics and other complex concepts. His online video-based learning platform, The Khan Academy, has become a popular aid for teaching students of all ages and abilities […]

Design-Inspired Health Care: John Maeda at TEDMED 2013 [VIDEO]

“Becoming a leader isn't about going up the mountain—it's about jumping off the mountain and asking the question, will you survive?” says John Maeda in his keynote at this year's TEDMED conference. Actually, as he later clarifies, leadership is not only asking if you'll survive jumping off the mountain—but whether you'll thrive doing so. This […]

Turn Traditional Leadership Upside Down: John Maeda On The Creative Economy

“How do creative people lead? How is that possible?” leadership speaker John Maeda asked the audience in his keynote at the Design Indaba Conference 2013. While he says that creative people are sometimes seen as “flaky,” their agile and adaptable nature makes them an asset to any organization. In a post-speech interview, Maeda says that many […]

Artist vs. Establishment: How Molly Crabapple Fought Convention—And Won

Molly Crabapple, a reviewer writes in The New Republic, “represents an alternative to the mechanism through which many young artists today find success.” And, the article continues, “[Crabapple] is an emblem of the way that art could break out of the gilded gallery.” The way the art speaker and activist funded her newest project, Shell […]

Immigration Rises & The Power Moves West: John Ibbitson On The Big Shift

With over 250,000 immigrants coming to Canada each year, it's no wonder the new book by politics speaker John Ibbitson is called The Big Shift. Co-authored with Darrell Bricker, the immediate bestseller argues that Canada—traditionally known as one of the world's most consensual countries—is polarizing. With major changes to the population of the country, and to […]

Sharpen Your Financial Literacy: Salman Khan Teaches Better Money Habits

Education speaker Salman Khan has helped millions of people brush up on their learning with his revolutionary online school The Khan Academy. While he is perhaps best known for his YouTube videos that teach users science and math, he actually got his start in finance. A former hedge fund analyst, Khan told CBS News (embedded […]

Behind The Name: Adam Alter Tells BigThink What Inspired Drunk Tank Pink

Why did science speaker Adam Alter decide to title his new book after a shade of pink that once graced the inside of jail cells? As he explains in a new BigThink segment, Drunk Tank Pink—which is the name of this unique shade of pink, and the title of Alter's book—was originally used to pacify […]

John Maeda: “Artists & Designers Will Be The Innovators Of This Century”

“Amid the rain, and the fog, and the rain, and the rain, Seattle was home to the beginning of my journey traversing the fields of technology, art and design,” education speaker John Maeda writes in a new editorial in The Seattle Times. He jokes that he was a Seattle native before it became cool to […]

Emily Bazelon Has Written an “Authoritative and Important” Book on Bullying Says NYT

“In its prescriptions Sticks and Stones shines,” the New York Times writes about Lavin speaker Emily Bazelon's new book. “That is why this authoritative and important book should not only be read by educators and parents alike, but should also be taught in law schools and journalism schools.” Bazelon argues that stamping out bullying involves more […]

Innovative Products Aren’t Always ‘New’ Products: John Maeda On Design

“Study history,” innovation speaker John Maeda says in an interview after a recent keynote speech, “because there’s a lot of ‘new’ stuff in history to find again.” Maeda took part in Day 1 of the Design Indaba Conference, which focused on creativity and design strategies around the world, late last month. In his talk, and in the […]

Democratic Participation Drives Economic Growth: Daron Acemoglu

“The question 'why are some countries poor and others not?' is one of the most important questions in social science,” economics speaker Daron Acemoglu argues, “yet, our understanding is still imperfect, to say the least.” Acemoglu, co-author of Why Nations Fail (with fellow Lavin speaker James Robinson) recently spoke at the Canadian Institute for Advanced […]

A Standing Ovation For Civil Rights Legend Minnijean Brown Trickey

In 1957, diversity speaker Minnijean Brown Trickey was one of nine other black students to become the first to integrate into what was once an all-white school. In a new keynote, she says that the experience was hostile, at best. However, her reception was far more favorable years later when she walked through the doors […]

Innovation Speaker John Maeda Says Art Can Help The Economy [VIDEO]

“Why does STEAM policy matter?” asks innovation speaker John Maeda of his quest to turn the current curriculem of STEM courses (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) into STEAM courses (the A representing the addition of arts). The answer is simple. “It is how America will reign competitive and remain the leader in the 21st century.” In […]

A Lifetime Of Achievement: The U.S. Senate Honors Bill Strickland

Bill Strickland's contributions to education and his community are about to be recognized in a big way. U.S. Senator Bob Casey is holding a symposium in Strickland's honor on Feb. 25. The Senator will give a speech and discuss the tremendous work that Strickland has done for those not just in Pittsburgh, but to the […]

Strong Support Networks Help Children Overcome Adversity: Paul Tough [VIDEO]

Sometimes children are exposed to such seemingly insurmountable obstacles that they can lose faith in their potential to succeed. As education speaker Paul Tough explains in a recent keynote, being told that you can succeed has a tremendous impact on your actual ability to do so. While having a strong support system doesn't improve the […]

Embracing Aboriginal Traditions & Community: Waneek Horn-Miller

As one of North America's most inspiring Native speakers, Waneek Horn-Miller is proud of her heritage and is highly involved in the aboriginal community. She recently signed on with the Manitobah Mukluks company to be the brand ambassador for the traditional, Canadian-made footwear. “This is a success story,” Waneek Horn-Miller says of the Manitobah Mukluks company […]

Breaking The Mold: Conference Speaker John Maeda On Creative Leadership

As John Maeda argues in Forbes, business leaders can stand to learn a great deal from artists and designers. That explains why architect Zaha Hadid was recently given the Aenne Burda award for creative leadership. Maeda, a conference speaker at this week's Digital-Life-Design event, asked attendees whether they considered themselves to be creatives, leaders, or […]

Angela Davis: Don’t Subordinate Your Aspirations To Political Agendas

As social change speaker Angela Davis says in her keynote address at the Peace Ball in Washington, President Obama's work is just beginning. With the long election campaign behind him, he is now embarking on his second term as President of the United States. While Davis says it's wonderful to support him, “that support should […]

Bill Strickland: The Kids Are Fine, It’s The Schools That Need To Change

Bill Strickland recently appeared on a local NPR affiliate station to discuss the opening of a new program that uses the arts to teach at-risk students, and why it is so important to incorporate arts education in these programs. Located in the Charlotte area, Studio 345 uses innovate new techniques to help decrease student drop-out […]

Think You’ve Got What It Takes? Take Paul Tough’s Grit Test

How gritty are you? According to education speaker Paul Tough, the “grittier” you are, the more likely you are to succeed in life. He doesn't mean gritty in a John Wayne from the wild west kind of way, though he does admit that that reference certainly has a “deep historical resonance.” Rather, he is referring […]

Paul Tough: Stress Can Be Toxic—And Parents Are The Antidote [VIDEO]

The world can be a very stressful place, especially for a child. As education speaker Paul Tough explains, children who have strong connections with their parents at a young age learn to deal with stress better than those who don't. “When children are able to form a close, attached, nurturing, bond with a parent or […]

Paul Tough: Some Adversity is Good for Kids [VIDEO]

“I think what we have in our culture,” education speaker Paul Tough says in a new keynote, “is an adversity gap.” Some children face too much adversity in their life, while other children don't face as many challenges—if any at all. What he says in the speech is that neither option is beneficial to the […]

John Maeda In Wired: Videogames Belong In The MoMA

Do the video games Pac-Man, Tetris, SimCity, and Myst belong in the Museum of Modern Art? Some critics say no.  John Maeda, President of Rhode Island School of Design however, says yes. While you can make the argument about whether or not these games are actually art or not, the MoMA acquired these games as “outstanding […]

“Exhilarating”: A Student Review Of Reza Aslan’s Middle East Class

Reza Aslan's Religion and Politics in the Middle East class is “exciting and, admittedly, a bit exhilarating,” says a student at New York's Drew University.  As he writes in a glowing review in the school's newspaper, the experience of being taught by the bestselling author fulfilled much more than just a degree requirement. One of the […]

NYT‘s 100 Notable Books of 2012: Paul Tough & E.O. Wilson Make The List!

The New York Times has announced its choices for their 100 Notable Books of 2012 list, and contributions by Paul Tough and Edward O. Wilson made the cut! Every year, the editors of The New York Times Book Review compile a list of books that have captured their attention, and the subject matter tackled in […]

Walter Isaacson Calls Salman Khan “The Coolest Person in America Today” [VIDEO]

Who is “the coolest person in America today,” according to Walter Isaacson? Why it's education speaker Salman Khan, of course. One of TIME's Most Influential People, Isaacson is the author of the record-breaking biography of Steve Jobs, the CEO of the Aspen Institute, the former CEO of CNN and the former Managing Editor of TIME. […]

Paul Tough: How Poverty Can Act As A Barrier To Success

“Let’s give credit where credit is due,” Diane Ravitch writes in a blog post about Paul Tough's How Children Succeed. “Tough is smart. He knows what is going on.” The ideas that Tough presents in his book about character development, stress and education have sparked a national conversation about the way we teach our children. […]

Combating Misconceptions: Reza Aslan On Understanding Islam [VIDEO]

When religion speaker Reza Aslan talks about the Middle East, he doesn't pull any punches. In a video interview with Stand Alone Media, he combats current misconceptions about Muslims and Islam head on—offering a blunt, but valid and thoroughly researched, rebuttal on some of the most commonly held beliefs about Islam as a religion. As […]

The World’s Most Important Teacher: Google’s Eric Schmidt On Salman Khan [VIDEO]

When Eric Schmidt is praising your accomplishments, you're doing something right. Education speaker Salman Khan recently sat down with the Executive Chairman of Google to discuss his newly-released book, The One World Schoolhouse, and the growth of the Khan Academy. “It may very well be that Salman Khan becomes the most important educator in the entire […]

When People Dont “Get” Art, It Means It’s Working: Design Speaker John Maeda [VIDEO]

People often strive to seek out the “meaning” behind art. In a talk at TEDGlobal 2012, however, design speaker John Maeda argued that the questions art stimulates are more important than “understanding” it. “When people say, ‘I don’t get art. I don’t get it all,’ that means art is working,” he said in the talk. “Art […]

Speakers Bureau News: David Lavin on Paul Tough, Ninive Calegari, Reggie Love [VIDEO]

People make certain assumptions about what it must be like to run a speakers bureau. “It must be great to hang out with interesting people all the time,” they’ll say. And, who are we to disagree? For the most part, they’re right! Above is the first in a series of videos featuring David Lavin, president […]

David Brooks Calls Paul Tough’s How Children Succeed “Essential.”

Lavin's newest education speaker, Paul Tough, believes that test scores aren't the only benchmarks for success—and that social and psychological issues can hinder a child's learning experience. In his instant new bestseller, How Children Succeed, which New York Times columnist David Brooks descibes as “essential”, Tough proposes that dealing with trauma from a young age […]

Fast Company Names Kiva’s Jessica Jackley an “Extraordinary Woman”

Innovators, leaders, philanthropists, and artists—all grace Fast Company's A-Z rundown of 60 women bettering the world for girls and women. Lavin's own Jessica Jackley, co-founder of Kiva, is on the “League of Extraordinary Women” list alongside women like Hillary Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, and Melinda Gates. On Jackley and Kiva, from Fast Company: The Kiva microfinance […]

Creating a Better Conference Culture: Jeremy Gutsche

One of the great things about a keynote from Trendhunter’s Jeremy Gutsche is that he can adapt his message of methodical innovation to any audience. Recently, he spoke in front of an influential group of meeting planners about, well, how to plan better meetings and conferences. It’s a topic that, given his hundreds of talks […]

Salman Khan: Tech Makes Classrooms More, Not Less, Interactive

Last month, we were in the audience in Toronto’s TIFF Lightbox building as Salman Khan spoke about his world-famous Khan Academy—a nonprofit that provides free, high-quality education to “anyone, anywhere” through online videos. The Khan Academy is the perfect example of the positive power of media in education: more technology actually means more interaction in […]

Daron Acemoglu: The Widening Gap Between Rich and Poor

Daron Acemoglu, an academic superstar and one of the world's most-cited economists, talks about economic inequality in a major Browser interview this month. The Why Nations Fail author addresses Occupy Wall Street, CEO wages, and the incredibly widening gap between what the rich earn versus what the poor earn—highlighting today’s complex wage realities. Here are […]

John Maeda’s New Book, Redesigning Leadership

World-renowned artist, graphic designer, and educator John Maeda has worked to integrate technology, education, and the arts into a 21st century synthesis of creativity and innovation. In 2008, Maeda became president of the Rhode Island School of Design. That same year, Esquire named him one of the 75 most influential people of the 21st century. […]

From Aspen Ideas Fest: John Maeda on Creative Cultures

Innovation speaker John Maeda recently spoke about building cultures of creativity at the 2011 Aspen Ideas Festival, as part of a panel moderated by Paolo Antonelli, MOMA's senior curator in the department of Architecture and Design. The renowned artist, designer, educator, and current president of the Rhode Island School of Design, suggested that there are […]

John Elder Robison Profiled on Science Channel’s Ingenious Minds

John Elder Robison, Lavin speaker and author of Look Me in the Eye, was recently profiled on an episode of Science Channel’s Ingenious Minds – a show that explores the lives of savants. Robison was born with Asperger’s syndrome (but wasn’t diagnosed until age forty), a type of autism that is characterized by an extreme […]

Jeremy Gutsche on MBAs: It’s Not What You Learn, It’s Who You Learn With

Jeremy Gutsche, Lavin speaker and founder of Trendhunter.com, didn’t achieve success all on his own. It was his well rounded background, including an MBA from Queen’s University, that gave him the foundation he needed to become one of the world’s foremost expert on consumer trends. That — and a little help from his friends. In […]

Social Entrepreneur Speaker Bill Strickland Joins White House Council for Community Solutions

For the past three decades, speaker Bill Strickland has been transforming the lives of thousands of adults and teenagers through his innovative jobs training and education centers. Last seen in the public education documentary Waiting for Superman, Bill has just been chosen as one of the 25 members of the White House Council for Community Solutions. […]

John Maeda: Art + Science = Innovation

We stumbled upon some of John Maeda’s classic design work today, over at Fast Company. One of the world’s most famous designers, and ever prescient, John’s been preaching some form of “design thinking” for many years now. As a keynote speaker, and as President of the Rhode Island School of Design, he talks about a subject close to […]