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March 20, 2019, 6-7:30 p.m. Sargent Hall, Fifth Floor Commons, 120 Tremont Street, Boston

Author Safi Bahcall will discuss his new book, Loonshots: How to Nurture the Crazy Ideas that Win Wars, Cure Diseases, and Transform Industries.


What do James Bond and Lipitor have in common? Why do traffic jams appear out of nowhere on highways? What can we learn about human nature and world history from a glass of water? Physicist and biotech entrepreneur Bahcall, reveals a surprising new way of thinking about the mysteries of group behavior that challenges everything we thought we knew about radical breakthroughs. Bahcall shows why groups will suddenly change from embracing wild new ideas to rigidly rejecting them, just as flowing water will suddenly change into brittle ice. Mountains of print have been written about culture. Learn the small shifts in structure that control this transition, the same way that temperature controls the change from water to ice. The program will be moderated by Andrew McAfee, co-director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy, and the associate director of the Center for Digital Business at the MIT Sloan School of Management, which studies the ways information technology affects businesses and society.


Praise for Loonshots

“This book has everything: new ideas, bold insights, entertaining history and convincing analysis. Not to be missed by anyone who wants to understand how ideas change the world.”

~ Daniel Kahneman, author of Thinking, Fast and Slow and winner of the Nobel Prize


Photograph of author Safi Bahcall

Author Safi Bahcall