This year's HowTheLightGetsIn presented hundreds of talks and debates featuring a selection of the finest minds in philosophy, art, science, politics and more. Our 2015 line-up included Green party leader Natalie Bennett, novelist and comic book writer Warren Ellis, Cambridge psychologist Simon Baron-Cohen, Guardian columnist Polly Toynbee and best-selling philosopher Terry Eagleton.


Here are Just a Few Selected Speakers

from HowTheLightGetsIn 2015...


Warren Ellis in March of the Machines

Evil artificial intelligences are luckily confined to fiction. Yet leading scientists claim that intelligent machines are 'the most serious threat facing mankind'. Are they right or could a mind free from human prejudices create a better world? Or is all talk of artificial intelligence a deluded fantasy?


Physicist Roger Penrose, computer scientist Nigel Shadbolt, and novelist and digital age icon Warren Ellis consider the threat of intelligent machines. Gabrielle Walker hosts.


George Galloway in Vanity Fair

With more photos taken every two minutes than in the entire 19th century, the Selfie generation would make Narcissus blush. Yet from Napoleon to Steve Jobs, self-absorption is often a trait of leaders. Should we celebrate self-promotion to create a more confident outgoing culture, or is British understatement a treasure?

Cambridge philosopher and author of Mirror, Mirror, Simon Blackburn, award-winning historian Suzannah Lipscomb, politician George Galloway and Wilful Blindness author and business woman Margaret Heffernan examine the value of vanity.

Simon Blackburn in In Search of the Self

There is no self, no 'I', only a flickering illusion. So claim many neuroscientists and philosophers. Yet for the rest of us, the denial of the self feels like a bitter pill to swallow. Is the self a fantasy? Or is it essential to our being and consciousness?


Cambridge philosopher Simon Blackburn, neuroscientist Colin Blakemore and philosopher and author of Are you an Illusion? Mary Midgley seek out the all-seeing 'I'.


Lawrence Krauss in Everything We Know Is Wrong
At a time of uncertainty and doubt, we often suppose that science alone uncovers the truth. Yet a new study demonstrated that 90% of recent scientific findings are wrong. Is our belief in science a mistake? Should we instead see it as a means of creating useful fantasies or is science the only direct line to reality we've got?

Best-selling theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss, outspoken philosopher of science Steve Fuller and the Economist's Kenneth Cukier tell Gabrielle Walker why so much of what we think we know is wrong.

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown in Beyond Borders

The nation, the tribe, the union, are all sources of strength. But they are also a means to entrench advantage and exclude others. Are borders and boundaries really about privilege? Should we strengthen them so we have greater power and status, or remove them to create a fairer world?

Independent columnist and author of Exotic England Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, Labour MP Frank Field and LSE political theorist Chandran Kukathas look beyond borders.


Terry Eagleton in The Death of God and the War on Terror

How did the death of God give birth to Western capitalism and the religious fundamentalism that thrives under its wing? Best-selling philosopher and critic Terry Eagleton, one of Britain's most outspoken and influential public intellectuals, reveals the unspoken history of our supposedly faithless world.


John Ellis in Everything and Nothing

Some claim it created the universe. Sartre argued it was central to our Being. Yet Nothing turns out to be strangely elusive. Scientists can't find it or describe it. Bertrand Russell argued it was just a logical mistake. Is Nothing an illusion, a fictitious error? Or is it a vital key to our understanding of the universe and who we are?


Multiverse cosmologist Laura Mersini-Houghton, CERN physicist John Ellis and philosopher of science and author of Every Thing Must Go James Ladyman keep looking for Nothing.


Neel Mukherjee in Gandhi vs Guevara

Gandhi's principle of non-violence made him the father of a nation. But it is Che Guevara whose face has come to represent liberty, justice, and revolution. Whose fantasies play the bigger part in shaping our reality? Does the pacifism of Gandhi or the passion of Che have the greatest power to change the world?


Greenpeace director John Sauven, London Feminist Network founder Finn Mackay and author of The Lives of Others Neel Mukherjee debate the road to revolution.


David Aaronovitch [77] [93] [212] 

Times columnist and twice winner of the Orwell Prize for Political Journalism. He is the current Chair of Index on Censorship.

Jasper Fforde [340] [604] [623] 

Fforde has been writing since 2001 when his novel The Eyre Affair debuted on the New York Times bestseller list. He lives and works in Wales.

Laura Mersini-Houghton [445] [511] 

Professor of Physics at the University of North Carolina, her work focuses on the birth of the universe and has been widely covered by the New Scientist and the BBC.

Diane Abbott [86] [127] [165] 

Labour leader nominee and former Shadow Minister for Health. Abbott has been MP for Hackey North and Stoke Newington since 1987.

Frank Field [278] 

Frank Field is a Labour MP and former Minister for Welfare Reform.

Mary Midgley [47] [76] 

Described by the Guardian as “the UK’s foremost scourge of scientific pretension”, Mary Midgley’s six-decade dominance of British philosophy has seen her author books including Beast and Man and The Myths We Live By.

Madawi al-Rasheed [527] [559] 

Madawi al-Rasheed is the author of Contesting the Saudi State and a visiting Professor at LSE.

Myriam Francois-Cerrah [65] [93] [147] 

Hollywood actress turned journalist and political commentator, Myriam Francois-Cerrah is a regular contributor to The Guardian.

John Milbank [534] [549] [559] 

Theologian and founder of the 'Radical Orthodoxy' movement. His books include The Monstrosity of Christ, co-authored with Slavoj Zizek.

Tariq Ali [213] 

Tariq Ali is an author, filmmaker and journalist. He is an editor of the New Left Review.

Karl Friston [442] [515] 

Friston is the Principal Research Fellow and Scientific Director of The Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging.

Daniel Miller [512] [616] [629] 

Professor of Anthropology at UCL. He is currently undertaking the world's largest study on the impact of social media.

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown [162] [207] [218] [228] 

Award-winning, Ugandan-born author and columnist Yasmin Alibhai-Brown currently writes for The Independent and The Evening Standard, and is the founder of British Muslims for Secular Democracy.

Steve Fuller [68] [123] [148] [204] [237] 

A philosopher of science with a postmodern take, Fuller is the author of Humanity 2.0 and Professor at the University of Warwick.

Rana Mitter [46] [60] [85] 

Presenter of Free Thinking and contributor to the Financial Times, Mitter is Professor of the History and Politics of Modern China at Oxford.

Adjoa Andoh [512] 

Adjoa Andoh is a writer and actress known for her work with the RSC and National Theatre.

Ann Furedi [282] [302] 

Former journalist and leading pro-choice advocate, Ann Furedi is the head of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service.

Ray Monk [513] [551] 

Professor of Philosophy at the University of Southampton, Monk won the John Llewellyn Rhys prize for Wittgenstein: The Duty of Genius.

Kimberly Anne [546] 

Kimberly Anne is a poet and singer/songwriter.

Frank Furedi [550] [594] [613] [623] 

Sociologist Frank Furedi’s recent work explores the nature of authority. He is a leading voice in discussions of fear, risk and the unknown.

Adrian Moore [67] 

Professor of Philosophy at the University of Oxford.  His books include: Noble In Reason, Infinite in Faculty.

David Arnold [546] 

Arnold is a Grammy Award winning composer. He has scored five Bond films. His collaborators include Pulp, Shirley Bassey and Björk.


Markus Gabriel [455] [533] 

Philosopher and author of Trascendental Ontology, Markus Gabriel is director at the International Center for Philosophy at Bonn.

Richard K. Morgan [16] [57] 

Winner of the Arthur C. Clark award, sci-fi writer Richard K. Morgan's books include Broken Angels and The Steel Remains.

Peter Atkins [472] [517] [593] 

Professor Emeritus of Chemistry at the University of Oxford, Peter Atkins is the author of Galileo’s Finger.

George Galloway [221] [239] [245] 

Born with the "gift of Glasgow's gab" (Times), Respect MP Galloway described his 2012 return to office as "the most sensational victory in British history."

Veronique Mottier [453] 

Professor of Sociology at the University of Lausanne. Véronique Mottier is the author of Sexuality: A Very Short Introduction.

Julian Baggini [288] [293] [303] [329] [340] [352] 

Co-founder of The Philosophers' Magazine, Baggini is the author of The Virtues of the Table and The Duck That Won the Lottery.

Giorgio Ganis [399] 

Associate Professor of cognitive neuroscience at Plymouth University and Research Associate at Harvard Medical School.

Neel Mukherjee [389] [396] [414] 

Award winning writer, Neel Mukherjee's most recent novel, The Lives of Others, was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2014.

Julian Barbour [449] [465] [516] 

Independent theoretical physicist who reformulated relativity using Machian principles. His books include The End of Time.

Clare Gerada [] 

Former Chair of the Council of the Royal College of General Practitioners, in 2013 she was voted one of the most powerful women in the UK by
Women’s Hour.

Parashkev Nachev [280] 

Senior clinical research associate at the Institute of Neurology, UCL, and honorary clinical lecturer at Imperial College London.

Shahidha Bari [67] [140] [166] 

BBC New Generation Thinker Shahidha Bari is co-founder of the intellectual salon How To Live and author of Keats and Philosophy.

Eliane Glaser [340] [353] [383] [386] 

Eliane Glaser is a writer, journalist and lecturer and author of Get Real: How to See Through the Hype, Spin and Lies of Modern Life.


Maajid Nawaz [] 

Maajid Nawaz is a former Islamist extremist who wrote about his identity struggles in his 2012 memoir, Radical. He is now a counter-extremism activist and the Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Hampstead & Kilburn.

Eileen Barker [461] [478] 

Specialising in cults and New Religious Movements, Eileen Barker is the author of The Making of a Moonie: Choice or Brainwashing?

Simon Glendinning [592] [615] 

Director of the Forum for European Philosophy and Associate Professor at the LSE, Glendinning is the author of Derrida’s Legacies.

Mark Niel [284] 

Mark Niel was appointed as the first Poet Laureate of Milton Keynes in 2011.

Simon Baron-Cohen [125] [130] 

Professor of Psychology at the University of Cambridge, Baron-Cohen's books include The Science of Evil and The Essential Difference.

Salena Godden [284] 

Salena Godden is a British poet and author. She has contributed regularly to BBC Radio 4's Saturday Live.

Kieron O'Hara [] 

Kieron O'Hara is a philosopher, computer scientist and political author. He is author of Conservatism and Plato and the Internet.

Stephen Bayley [333] [346] [358] 

Author and critic Bayley is also the former director of the Design Museum. He writes for the Observer and is a contributing editor to GQ.

Naomi Goulder [237] [299] [703] [709] [710] 

Naomi Goulder is Head of Faculty and Senior Lecturer for the philosophy degree at New College of the Humanities. She received a double first in philosophy from the University of Cambridge. She completed a doctoral degree with an AHRC award at Birkbeck College, University of London. Naomi works at the intersection of philosophy of action and ethics and is especially interested in relations between authority and authorship. 

Brendan O'Neill [509] [527] 

Brendan O'Neill is the editor of Spiked Online and a columnist for The Big Issue and The Australian.

Melissa Benn [542] [594] 

Journalist, author and campaigner Melissa Benn is founder of the Local Schools Network. Her latest book is What Shall We Tell our Daughters?

Philip Gross [296] 

Philip Gross is a British poet. In 2009 he won the T.S. Eliot Prize for his collection The Water Table.

John Osbourne [296] 

John Osbourne is a writer and poet. In 2011 his solo show, John Peel's Shed, was a success at the Edinburgh Fringe and was adapted for Radio 4.

Melissa Benn [605] 

Melissa Benn is a journalist and the author of School Wars.

Malcolm Guite [328] [332] 

Revered by the Archbishop of Canterbury, by day Malcolm is the Chaplain of Girton college, theologian and a scholar of Coleridge.

David Papineau [453] 

David Papineau is lecturer at King's College and CUNY, he was President of the Mind Associaction and the Aristotelian Society.

Natalie Bennett [137] [165] [172] 

Leader of the Green Party and former editor of The Guardian Weekly, Natalie Bennett is also founder of the blog Carnival of Feminists and an active campaigner on women's issues.

Peter Hacker [] 

Emeritus Oxford philosopher widely associated with the study of Wittgenstein. His books include Philosophical Foundations of Neuroscience.

Don Paterson [296] [304] [330] [343] [357] 

Scottish poet, writer and musician whose collections include Landing Light, which won the TS Eliot Prize and Whitbread Award in 2003.

Richard Bentall [125] [140] [164] 

Richard Bentall is Professor of Psychology at the University of Liverpool and author of Madness Explained and Doctoring the Mind.

Catherine Hakim [148] [281] [293] 

Social scientist pioneering proponent of 'erotic capital', Catherine Hakim's books include The New Rules: Internet Dating, Playfairs and Erotic Power.

Rowan Pelling [86] [174] 

Former 'Editrice' of the Erotic Review and a columnist for the Daily Telegraph, whose books include the Decadent Handbook. She is currently at work on her first novel.

Dinesh Bhugra [125] [129] [148] [206] 

President of the World Psychiatric Association, Dinesh Bhugra is professor of mental health at KCL's Institute of Psychiatry.

Christopher Hamilton [512] [527] [536] [611] 

Author of Middle Age ("It is not often you find burning outrage in a work of philosophy" - Independent), Christopher Hamilton works at Kings College London.

Roger Penrose [92] [141] 

Mathematical Physicist and winner of the prestigious Wolf Prize in Physics with Stephen Hawking for their work on black holes.

Julie Bindel [86] [99] [124] [166] 

Writer, feminist and co-founder of Justice for Women, writes regularly for the Guardian on sexual violence, food, and lesbian and gay issues. Her book, Straight Expectations, is published in June 2014

Joanne Harris [554] [590] [598] [624] 

Prolific author Joanne Harris has written fourteen novels, including the award-winning Chocolat, which was made into an Oscar-nominated film. She studied Modern and Mediaeval Languages at Cambridge and was a teacher for fifteen years.

Jacques Peretti [360] 

Journalist, broadcaster and presenter. Jacques Peretti's credits include The Super Rich and Us.

John Bird [526] [552] 

Social Entrepreneur and founder of the Big Issue. He was awarded an MBE for his services to homeless people.

John Harris [282] [299] [306] 

Professor of Bioethics at the University of Manchester. His latest book is Enhancing Evolution.

Ann Pettifor [609] 

Ann Pettifor is an author and financial analyst. In 2006 she published The Coming First World Debt Crisis, which predicted the 2008 financial crisis and its causes.

Sarah Bird [408] 

Activist and CEO of Timebanking UK, Sarah Bird is committed to changing the way we conduct and reward work.

David Healy [129] [165] [226] 

Professor in Psychological Medicine known for criticising a lack of neutrality regarding psychotropic drugs and his role in 'Toronto Affair' over academic freedom. His books include The Antidepressant Era and Pharmageddon.

Sally Phillips [327] [346] [352] 

Sally Phillips is a British actress known for her appearances in Miranda, I'm Alan Partridge and Bridget Jones.

Simon Blackburn [76] [147] [179] [245] [701] [705] [706] 

Simon Blackburn is one of the country's leading philosophers, well known for his efforts to make philosophy accessible to a wider public. He is well regarded as a proponent of a distinctive approach to ethics and a defender of neo-Humean views on a variety of topics. Simon has been a Vice-President of the British Humanist Association and a former editor of the journal Mind.

Margaret Heffernan [156] [217] 

Margaret Heffernan is an entrepreneur, writer and broadcaster. Her books, Wilful Blindness and A Bigger Prize, were both nominated for awards.

Sarah Pinborough [] 

Horror and fantasy writer, and includes Torchwood amongst her titles. She was Mistress of Ceremonies at the 2011 British Fantasy Awards.

Heidi Blake [] 

Award-winning investigative journalist and Investigations Editor at Buzz-Feed. She is best known for her investigation into corruption in FIFA.

Isabel Hilton [527] [609] 

Journalist and broadcaster Isabel Hilton is the founder of China Dialogue. She writes for the Guardian and broadcasts on BBC Radio 3 and 4.

Huw Price [416] [465] [508] 

Bertrand Russell professor of philosophy at Trinity, Cambridge, Price is founder of the Centre for Time.

Colin Blakemore [16] [51] [76] [97] 

Colin Blakemore is a neurobiologist and former Chief Executive of the British Medical Research Council.

Afua Hirsch [229] [282] [299] 

Having recently joined the team at Sky News as Social Affairs Editor, Hirsch was previously the West Africa correspondent for the Guardian.

Rupert Read [82] [126] [155] 

A philosopher and Green Party politician, Read is Chair of the Green House think-tank and co-editor of The New Wittgenstein.

Phillip Blond [147] [173] [243] 

Political theorist and leading proponent of ‘Red Toryism’, Phillip Blond is Director of the ResPublica think tank.

Angie Hobbs [16] [67] [156] 

The first Chair for the Public Understanding of Philosopphy at Sheffield, Angie Hobbs is a Plato scholar and a frequent broadcaster.

Alastair Reynolds [352] [358] 

Alastair Reynolds is a science fiction writer and novelist who has worked for the European Space Agency.

Paul Boghossian [551] [624] 

Silver Professor of Philosophy at NYU, Paul Boghossian's publications include the Choice Award winning Fear of Knowledge.

Margaret Hodge [207] [231] 

Margaret Hodge is the Chair of the Public Accounts Committee. She has served the constituency of Barking and Dagenham as a Labour MP since 1994.

Gina Rippon [130] [163] 

Eminent neuroscientist Gina Rippon is a Professor of Cognitive Neuroimaging and an outspoken critic of the 'neurotrash industry'.

Roger Bolton [165] [211] [228] 

Roger was Editor of Panorama and Tonight at the BBC, before becoming Head of Network Production in 1983. After decades of success as a producer, Roger turned his hand to presenting as the voice of Radio 4's Feedback and Sunday.

Dan Hodges [229] [246] 

Reported to be the Prime Minister's favourite columnist, Dan Hodges has been a political writer for the Guardian, the Times and the Telegraph.

Sam Roddick [542] [597] 

Artist, activist and entrepeneur, Sam Roddick is the founder of Coco De Mer and Bondage For Freedom.

Andrew Bowie [288] [331] 

Musician and lecturer of Philosophy and German at Royal Holloway, Andrew Bowie is author of Adorno and the Ends of Philosophy.

Ted Honderich [205] [212] 

Grote Professor Emeritus of philosophy of mind and logic at UCL, Ted Honderich is known for his outspoken views on issues from consciousness to terrorism and his principle of humanity.

Steven Rose [44] 

Professor of Neurobiology at Open University. Steven Rose was awarded the BNA lifetime award for outstanding contributions to neuroscience.

Joe Boyd [404] 

American producer and writer, Joe Boyd has been head of Warner Brothers music and worked with everyone from Bob Dylan to Pink Floyd.

Michael Horovitz [307] 

Michael Horovitz is a poet, artist and translator.

Meg Rosoff [526] [548] [598] 

Carnegie Medal winning author of How I Live Now, “the best children’s novel for adults since The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” (Time Out).

Ray Brassier [533] [608] 

Philosopher at the American University of Beirut, Ray Brassier is author of Nihil Unbound and a pioneer of speculative realism.

Michael Howard [609] 

Former Leader of the Conservative Party Michael Howard began his professional life as a Queen's Counsel. He has long been tipped for a return to the political frontline.

Michael Rowan-Robinson [445] 

Michael Rowan-Robinson was awarded the Hoyle medal for his research in cosmology. He is the author of Our Universe, an armchair guide.

Angela Breitenbach [358] [387] 

Angela Breitenbach is a lecturer and fellow in Philosophy at King's College, Cambridge.

Kate Hudson [603] 

Life-long activist Kate Hudson is General Secretary of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND).

Robert Rowland-Smith [61] [76] [88] [121] [148] [166] 

Quondam Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford. His books include Death-Drive and Breakfast with Socrates.

Berit Brogaard [385] [444] [453] [507] [515] 

Miami philosopher of mind Berit Brogaard has published on synethesia, savant syndrome and the emotions. Her recent books include On Romantic Love and The Superhuman Mind.

Bettany Hughes [] 

An award-winning historian, author, and broadcaster, Bettany Hughes was named one of the BBC's 100 Global Woman. Her book The Hemlock Cup became a New York Times bestseller.

Mark Rowlands [43] [75] [156] 

Miami-based philosopher Mark Rowlands is most widely known for his memoir, The Philosopher and the Wolf.

Chris Brown [] 

Professor of International Relations at the LSE. His books include Sovereignty, Rights and Justice.

Stephen Hull [222] 

Stephen Hull is editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post UK and former Head of Content at Metro. He led the coverage of the London Olympics in 2012.

Stephen Sackur [77] [93] 

Stephen Sackur is a journalist who has presented BBC current affairs and interview programme HARDtalk since 2004.

Oliver Burkeman [2] [42] [45] 

Award- winning journalist and author of The Antidote. Burkeman writes the Guardian's 'This Column Will Change Your Life'.

Crispin Hunt [546] 

Former frontman of Britpop band the Longpigs, who have toured with Radiohead and Supegrass, Hunt is a songwriter and producer.

Angela Saini [402] [453] [478] 

Science journalist, author of Geek Nation. Angela Saini has written for the Guardian, New Scientist and Wired.

Alex Callinicos [211] 

Alex Callinicos is Editor of International Socialism and Professor of European Studies at KCL. His books include Imperialism and the Global Economy.

Eva Jablonka [459] [469] [523] [533] 

Professor of History and Philosophy of Science at Tel Aviv Jablonka is a theoretical biologist. Her books include Evolution in Four Dimensions.

Mark Salter [130] [165] [203] [209] [293] 

Consultant psychiatrist and author of Outdoor Psychiatry, Mark has spent two decades working in acute psychiatric wards.

Beatrix Campbell [526] [542] 

Socialist and feminist activist and writer, Beatrix Campbell has written for the Guardian, New Statesman and Red Rag, as well as nine books including this year's The End of Equality.

Erwin James [2] 

A convicted murderer, James was sentenced for life in the 1980s. From prison he wrote the popular 'A Life Inside' column for the Guardian.

John Sauven [414] 

Executive director of Greenpeace UK, his current initatives include a drive to stop the exploitation of the Arctic.

Havi Carel [129] 

Professor of Philosophy at Bristol University, her work explores the nature of illness. Her book Illness is published by Acumen.

Alok Jha [472] [516] [543] 

Science correspondent at ITV News, Alok Jha has previously worked for the Guardian and the BBC. He is the author of The Doomsday Handbook.

John Searle [85] 

American philosopher noted for his seminal work in the philosophy of language and the philosophy of mind.

Clare Carlisle [224] [282] [299] 

KCL philosopher Clare Carlisle has published three books on Soren Kierkegaard, is author of On Habit and a columnist for the Guardian.

Anatole Kaletsky [63] [126] 

Economist, prolific journalist and two-time British Press Award winner. Kaletsky is the author of Capitalism 4.0 and Chairman of the Institute of New Economic Thinking.

Nigel Shadbolt [141] [208] [229] [244] 

Nigel Shadbolt is a Professor of Artificial Intelligence at the University of Southampton and the Chairman of the Open Data Institute, which he co-founded with Tim Berners-Lee.

Nancy Cartwright [443] [543] 

A former mathematician turned philosopher of science, Cartwright’s book How The Laws of Physics Lie has provoked continuing and internationally-cited debate.

Joanna Kavenna [516] [533] [551] [563] [595] [608] 

Named one of Granta’s Best Young British Novelists in 2013, Joanna Kavenna has written for the London Review of Books and the Observer. Her second novel Inglorious won the Orange Award for New Writing.

Ritula Shah [173] [212] [245] 

Presenter of Radio 4’s The World Tonight and PM, Shah was Media Professional of the Year at the 2011 Asian Women of Achievement Awards.

Jim Chancellor [546] 

Jim Chancellor is the MD of Fiction Records.

Luke Kennard [307] 

Luke Kennard is an award-winning poet, writer and critic, who specialises in Surrealism.

Fiona Shaw [16] 

"Leading actress of her generation" (Independent) Shaw has received international recognition for her roles in TV and film.

Vassili Christodoulou [623] 

An events producer specialising in the history and future of ideas, Vas managed HowTheLightGetsIn from 2010-2014 and is now Head of Programmes at School of Life.

Stephen King [46] 

Global Chief Economist at HSBC. His most recent book is When The Money Runs Out: The End of Western Affluence.

Tara Shears [443] [456] [472] 

Particle physicist and the first female physics professor at Liverpool. "Rapidly becoming the go-to scientist to explain all things CERN?” (Wired).

Richard Coles [288] [293] [346] 

Reverend Richard Coles is a broadcaster and journalist who has presented Nightwaves on BBC Radio 3 and Saturday Live on BBC Radio 4. He has written for the Times Literary Supplement and other national publications.

Lawrence Krauss [68] 

Cosmologist and Professor of Physics at Arizona State University, USA, his best selling science books include A Universe From Nothing.

Rupert Sheldrake [459] [474] [543] 

Rupert Sheldrake is a biologist best known for his hypothesis of morphic resonance and his research on telepathy in dogs and people.

Philip Collins [60] [83] [94] [173] [221] 

Philip Collins was Tony Blair's Chief Speech Writer as Prime Minister and is currently Visiting Fellow at LSE and associate editor at Prospect.

Paul Krugman [211] [238] 

Winner of the 2008 Nobel Prize in economics and outspoken critic of austerity, Paul Krugman is a columnist for the New York Times.

Robert Shiller [609] 

Robert Shiller is a Nobel Prize-winning economist and author. He co-founded investment management company MacroMarkets LLC.

Martin Creed [544] 

Scottish conceptual artist Creed won the Turner Prize in 2001 for his 'Work No 227, the lights going on and off'.

Chandran Kukathas [228] [279] 

Chandran Kukathas is a political theorist and a chair in the department of government at LSE.

Clare Short [46] [60] [83] 

Clare Short was Secretary of State for International Development under Tony Blair before resigning after the Iraq War.

Michael Crick [2] 

Founding member of the C4 News Team, Crick became the BBC’s political editor in 2007. He returned to C4 as a political correspondent in 2011.

Serena Kutchinsky [86] [208] 

Serena is Digital Editor of Prospect magazine, where she writes on topics such as politics, culture and gender. Prior to that she was a digital Editor at the Sunday Times and Time Out London, and is currently working on her first book.

Mary Ann Sieghart [60] [157] [221] [246] 

Independent columnist and former assistant editor of the Times, Mary Ann presents Profile on Radio 4, and is on the Council of Tate Modern.

Helena Cronin [61] [78] [130] 

Co-Director of the Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Science, Helena is a Darwinian philosopher and feminist. Her books include The Ant and the Peacock.

Will Kymlicka [46] [70] 

Canadian political philosopher, Kymlicka is the author of Multicultural Citizenship and co-author of Zoopolis: A Political Theory of Animal Rights.

Barry C. Smith [140] [166] [177] 

Director of the Institute of Philosophy at the School of Advanced Study. His interests include philosophy of wine, language and self knowledge.

Helen Croydon [512] [526] [542] [565] [616] 

A bestselling author, journalist and broadcaster, Helen Croydon’s books include Screw The Fairytale.

James Ladyman [511] [529] [593] 

Head of the Philosophy department at Bristol, James Ladyman’s work focuses on the philosophy of physics. He is editor of Scientific Metaphysics.

Frances Spalding [332] [348] 

Frances Spalding is a British art historian and writer.

Jon Cruddas [208] [228] [248] 

Shadow Cabinet as Labour Party Policy Coordinator. He  was an aide to Tony Blair for several years before becoming MP for Dagenham.

Rae Langton [388] 

Author of Sexual Solipsism, Rae Langton is a leading feminist theorist and a professor of philosophy at the University of Cambridge.

Julian Spalding [330] [346] [356] 

Critic, writer, broadcaster and curator, author of The Art of Wonder and The Poetic Museum, Julian is the former director of Glasgow Art Galleries and Museums.

Kenneth Cukier [68] [84] 

Kenneth Cukier is Data Editor of the Economist and former technology editor of The Wall Street Journal Asia. His recent book Big Data, co-authored with Viktor Mayer-Schoenberger, was shortlisted for FT Business Book of the Year 2013.

Stephen Law [466] [478] [559] 

Philosopher at the University of London, focused on the philosophy of religion. His books include The War for Children’s Minds.

Ed Stafford [615] [625] 

Ed Stafford holds the world record for being the first human being to walk the entire length of the Amazon River. In 2012 he spent 60 days in isolation on an uninhabited Pacific island for a Discovery Channel documentary.

Peter Curran [332] [358] [388] [414] 

Peter Curran is bestknown for hosting The Friday Night Arts Show, The Foghorn and Loose Ends. His new series is Bunk Bed.

Hilary Lawson [50] [85] [147] [222] [237] [352] [465] [472] [515] [608] 

Non-realist philosopher whose theory ‘Closure’ marks a post-Derridian return to metaphysics. He is Director of the IAI and founder of HowTheLightGetsIn.

Frances Stewart [238] 

Frances Stewart is a Professor of Development Economics at Oxford University. She was Chair of the UN Committee on Development Policy.

Sean Curran [129] [207] [238] 

Deputy Editor of the BBC's Parliamentary Programmes, Curran leads the teams who produce Today in Parliament and Yesterday in Parliament for BBC Radio 4.

Julian Le Grand [386] [396] [409] 

Former Senior Policy Advisor to Tony Blair and Professor at the LSE, Julian is one of the principal architects of choice in public services.

Bernard Stiegler [531] 

French philosopher Bernard Stiegler is author of States of Shock: Stupidity and Knowledge in the 21st Century.

Edwina Currie [212] [236] [288] [300] 

Former Conservative MP and Minister Edwina Currie is an author, broadcaster and commentator.

Helen Lederer [2] [36] [55] 

Helen cut her teeth at the Comedy Store and in The Young Ones before appearing in Absolutely Fabulous as Catriona.

Keston Sutherland [307] 

Keston Sutherland is the youngest ever professor of English at Sussex University and a leading poet of his generation.

Oliver Scott Curry [392] [402] [413] [459] [552] 

Lecturer at the Institute of Cognitive and Evolutionary Anthropology at Oxford and LSE, Curry’s work focuses on the evolution of morality.

Michael Ledger-Lomas [384] 

Michael Ledger-Lomas is a lecturer in the History of Christianity in Britain at King's College London.

Peter Tatchell [219] [238] [246] [286] 

Prominent activist, author and co-founder of OutRage! Voted #6 in the New Statesman’s ‘Heroes of Our Time’. Famously attempted to arrest Robert Mugabe.

Hannah Dawson [50] [85] [706] 

Lecturer at the New College of the Humanities and Historian of ideas Hannah Dawson is author of Locke, Language, and Early Modern Philosophy.

Charlotte Leslie [168] [173] [208] 

Charlotte Leslie is Conservative MP for Bristol North West and a Guardian columnist. She was The Spectator's Backbencher of the Year in 2013.

Janne Teller [237] [251] [280] [290] [330] 

Author and former UN economist Janne Teller’s books include existential novel Nothing. Her work has been translated into 13 languages.

Aubrey De Grey [21] [36] [56] 

Internatioanlly renowned expert in the field of gerontology, De Grey is Chief Science Officer of the SENS Research Foundation.

Suzannah Lipscomb [245] [280] [304] [336] [702] [707] [708] 

Suzannah Lipscomb is Head of Faculty and Senior Lecturer for the History BA at New College of the Humanities. She is an historian, author, broadcaster and award-winning academic. She has a double first in BA History and a distinction in her MSt in Historical Research from Lincoln College, Oxford and DPhil in History from Balliol College, Oxford, where she was a Jowett Senior Scholar. 

Pete The Temp [284] 

Pete The Temp, a.k.a Peter Bearder, is a poet and beat-box artist who has been been featured on BBC Radio 4, the World Service and Newsnight.

Jonathan Derbyshire [551] [559] [598] [615] [624] 

Jonathan Derbyshire is currently Managing Editor of Prospect and a regular contributor to The Philosopher’s Magazine.

John Lloyd [145] [157] [222] 

A columnist and contributing editor at the Financial Times, John Lloyd co-founded Oxford's Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.

Polly Toynbee [77] [125] 

'The queen of leftist journalists’ (Independent), Polly writes for the Guardian and was formerly Editor of Social Affairs at the BBC.

Katie Derham [552] 

Derham was the youngest newscaster on British television when she joined ITN in 1998. A keen violinist, she has hosted the Classical BRIT Awards four times.

Tim Lott [541] [591] [598] 

Travel and music journalist Tim Lott won the PEN/JR Ackerley Prize for Autobiography with his first book, The Scent of Dried Roses. He went on to win the Whitbread First Novel Award for White City Blue. His column on family matters appears every week in the Guardian.

Colin Tudge [402] [412] [478] 

Writer, broadcaster and co-founder of the College for Enlightened Agriculture, Colin Tudge’s books include The Secret Life of Trees.

Joseph Diekemper [516] 

Lecturer in Philosophy at Queen's University Belfast and former Templeton research fellow.

Finn Mackay [396] [414] [440] [446] 

Feminist activist and researcher Finn Mackay is the founder of the London Feminist Network. Her latest book is Radical Feminism.

Gianni Vattimo [] 

Author of A Farewell to Truth. Vattimo is an Italian philosopher, and politician exploring the relationship between postmodernism and nihilism.

Nigel Dodd [342] [386] [408] 

Author of The Social Life of Money, Nigel Dodd is a professor of sociology at the London School of Economics.

Doon Mackichan [304] [327] [332] 

Emmy-award winning actress and writer best known for her role as one third of the anarchic Smack the Pony ensemble.

Mark Vernon [41] [45] [67] 

A former clergyman who is now agnostic, Mark is a broadcaster and journalist whose books include Therapy and The Meaning of Friendship.

Paul Dolan [] 

Dolan is Professor of Behavioural Science in the Department of Social Policy at the London School of Economics and Chief Academic Advisor to the UK Government on economic appraisal. He is a member of the Cognitive and Behavioural Sciences Panel of the World Economic Forum.

Bronwen Maddox [221] 

Bronwen Maddox is a British journalist and author. In 2010 she became Editor of Prospect magazine.

Vanessa Vie [307] 

Vanessa Vie is a poet who will be perfoming with Michael Horovitz at HowTheLightGetsIn 2015.

Michael Duff [398] [443] 

Michael Duff is a Professor of Physics at Imperial College, London and a Fellow of the Royal Society. His research interests include string theory, M-theory and quantum gravity.

Brooke Magnanti [283] 

A biologist, blogger and author, Brooke is best-known by her pen name Belle de Jour. Her blog and books were adapted into the television programme Secret Diary of a Call Girl.

Gabrielle Walker [49] [68] [141] 

Writer and broadcaster specialising in climate change. Walker is a consultant to New Scientist and the author of The Hot Topic.

Robert Eaglestone [597] [618] 

Professor of Contemporary Literature and Thought at Royal Holloway, University of London. His books include Contemporary Fiction.

Kenan Malik [] 

Kenan Malik is the author of Man, Beast and Zombie.

Xinyuan Wang [629] 

Xinyuan Wang is part of the Global Social Media Impact Study research team, working on the interplay between fantasy and reality.

Terry Eagleton [558] [624] 

One of the country's most influential literary theorists and critics, Terry Eagleton is "an ineluctable part of British intellectual culture... " (Oxonian Review) and the author of Culture and the Death of God, Why Marx Was Right, The Illusions of Postmodernism, and Holy Terror. He is a Professor of English Literature at Lancaster.

Pippa Malmgren [150] 

Former economic advisor to George W. Bush and founder of Principalis Asset Management, Pippa Malmgren has been named Global Leader of Tomorrow by The World Economic Forum.

Simon Wessely [280] [295] 

Professor of Psychological Medicine at the Institute of Psychiatry in London, Wessely was the winner of the John Maddox Science Prize in 2012.

John Ellis [511] [522] [543] [599] 

CERN physicist John Ellis coined the term 'theory of everything' and coauthored the first paper on how to find the Higgs Boson in 1976.

Director whose acclaimed BBC science documentaries include High Anxieties and Dangerous Knowledge. He is the author of the cult economics blog GolemXIV.

Jamie Whyte [61] [86] [207] [238] 

Philosopher turned management consultant whose books dissect flawed reasoning. He has written for the Times and been a philosophy lecturer at Cambridge. Whyte is leader of the free market party ACT in New Zealand.

Warren Ellis [141] [158] 

Wildly successful comic book writer and 7-time Eagle award winner, Ellis has a knack for transhumanist themes and intelligent storytelling.

Chiara Marletto [471] [534] [593] 

Quantum computation researcher at the University of Oxford, Marletto works with David Deutsch on the Constructor Theory of Information.

Kate Williams [594] [615] 

Novelist, social historian and broadcaster. Her books include The Pleasures of Men.

George F. R. Ellis [443] [479] [534] 

Templeton Prize-winning cosmologist and coauthor, with Stephen Hawking, of The Large Scale Structure of Space-Time.

Richard Mason [441] 

One of our KCL 'New Thinkers', Richard Mason teaches and studies at King's College, London, where he is specialising in Proust and Genet.

Linda Woodhead [521] [552] 

Linda Woodhead is a sociologist of religion and a Professor at Lancaster University. Her books include The Spiritual Revolution and Religion and Change in Modern Britain.

Daniel Everett [50] [61] [122] [131] [143] 

Dean of Arts and Sciences at Bentley University, anthropologist Daniel Everett is best-known for multiple decades spent with the Pirahã people in the Amazon. His books include Language: The Cultural Tool.

Michela Massimi [465] [510] [608] 

Senior Lecturer at the University of Edinburgh, Massimi is the Co-Editor in Chief of the British Journal for the Philosophy of Science. She has just been awarded a 1.6 million euro grant from the European Research Council to work on a multi-disciplinary 5-year project on Perspectival Realism.

Peter York [560] [589] [597] [616] 

Broadcaster and cultural commentator Peter York is author of Athenticity Is a Con and co-authored The Official Sloane Ranger Handbook.

Pedro Ferreira [445] [470] 

Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Oxford. His books include The Perfect Theory.

Casper Melville [542] 

Former editor of New Humanist and contributor to the Guardian, Melville is the author of Taking Offence. He currently teaches at SOAS.

Institute of art and ideas