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    1-2 June, 2018 | Corvinus Campus Budapest, Hungary

    The biggest
    European festival on the future

  • Talking about the future of

    Is Big Data stealing your life? Can data influence election success? Can we fight against tech monopolies?

    Is creativity overrated in business? Why is everybody a fucking entrepreneur?

    Should we be afraid of humanoid robots? How’s the music of an AI composer? What if you can hack your own brainwaves?

    How can we solve the migration crisis? Will Western civilization survive its inner divisions? Which global power will rule the 21st century?

    Will Mother Nature strike back?

    Is yoga overhyped or a true savior? Can meditation help us navigate between fake and real?

    Which superchef will revolutionize dining? Will mushrooms save the world? How can we secure our food supply forever?

    What’s the future of Hollywood filmmaking? Can we fight for freedom with fiction books?

    Will society collapse into chaos within 30 years? Why are Silicon Valley billionaires preparing for the Apocalypse?

    Should we all mine cryptocurrency?


    The world's first robot citizen

    Looking like a futuristic Audrey Hepburn, she grimaces and chuckles, and even cracks jokes from time to time: meet Sophia the most advanced creation of Hanson Robotics. The computer-driven media darling has given numerous interviews, sung in a concert, starred in talk shows, and even graced the cover of Elle magazine. Sophia was recently granted Saudi citizenship, gaining more rights than the average woman in the country.

    Nathan Crowley
    Production designer, Interstellar

    Visionary production designer, three times Academy Award nominee. A regular collaborator with Christopher Nolan, Nathan designed the entire Dark Knight Trilogy. His recent projects include Interstellar, Westworld and Dunkirk.

    Margrethe Vestager
    European Commissioner of Competition Policy

    Described by the Economist as 'the rich world’s most powerful trustbuster', and one of the 100 most influential people in 2017 by Time Magazine, Commissioner Vestager has been a professional politician since the age of 21. She brought antitrust charges against Google and initiated investigations against tech giants like Amazon and Apple. She is also a mother of three.

    Kino MacGregor
    International yoga extraordinaire

    With over a million followers on Instagram, Kino’s dharma helps people experience the limitless potential of the human spirit through yoga. Having almost two decades of experience she is one of the few to receive the Certification to teach Ashtanga yoga by its founder.

    Jeffrey Tucker
    Anarcho-capitalist, founder of Liberty.me

    A firm believer of self-regulation, Jeffrey is the Content Director for the Foundation for Economic Education, founder of Liberty.me, a 'social network and online publishing platform for the liberty minded' and the director of a crypoasset hedge fund. He is the author of 'A Beautiful Anarchy: How to Create Your Own Civilization in the Digital Age' among others.

    Azar Nafisi
    Bestselling Author of Reading Lolita in Tehran

    Azar has written on the political implications of literature and culture, and the human rights of Iranian women. Her book, 'Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books' has spent over two years on The New York Times bestseller list, has been translated in 32 languages, and won major literary awards.

    Chris D. Thomas
    Chris D.
    Author of Inheritors of the Earth

    Renowned ecologist and environmentalist Chris gives hope to those who believe that human beings have irrevocably damaged the natural world. Chris shows us that we should not treat the Earth as a faded masterpiece that we need to restore and reminds us that the story of life is the story of change.

    Anna Newell Jones
    Newell Jones
    Economizer genius

    Eight years ago, Anna was suffocating under the weight of debt. She reached a breaking point and took drastic action: by stopping all unnecessary spending she eliminated a debt close to $24,000. Nowadays, Anna is on a mission to help others as the author of 'The Spender’s Guide to Debt-Free Living'.

    Laszlo Varro
    Chief Economist, IEA

    Since joining the International Energy Agency, László faced several tough issues such as the energy security challenges in Japan after Fukushima, Germany’s nuclear phase-out, the Russian-Ukrainian gas conflict, or the solar energy revolution. Before joining the IEA, Laszlo was the Director for Strategy Development at MOL Group.

    Shem Magnezi
    Author of "Fuck You Startup World"

    The man behind the 'Fuck You Startup World' post, a viral and furious anti-Silicon Valley rant. When not publicly melting down, Shem is a senior full stack developer with a decade of experience in various domains.

    Chad Freidrichs
    Director of The Experimental City

    Chad's latest documentary, 'The Experimental City' analyzes the futuristic developments of the past. His earlier film tells how the American city has changed through the lens of the infamous Pruitt-Igoe housing development. In addition to making documentaries, he teaches film production and film criticism at Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri.

    Dávid Lakatos
    CPO, Formlabs

    At pioneer 3D printing firm Formlabs, Dávid's team have built everything from figurines to prosthetics that could withstand temperatures up to 290 degrees Celsius. Prior to joining the company he founded Sold, an automated peer-to-peer selling service that was acquired by Dropbox. Dávid was a co-founder of FabLab Budapest.

    Miranda Wang
    Co-founder and CEO, BioCellection

    Instead of sitting by and watching as plastic suffocates us, Miranda's team finds ways to turn waste into raw materials for new products. She has been an entrepreneur since childhood and received BAs in biology, philosophy, and engineering entrepreneurship.

    Vess Popov
    Cambridge University Psychometrics Centre

    Vess is the master of leveraging academic research and commercial insight to transform how we work, shop, move, meet and play. His initiatives aim to ensure citizens retain control over their digital identities. As a lawyer-turned-big data professional, he develops predictive algorithms based on over 6 million users’ data.

    Andrew Taggart
    Practical Philosopher

    Do you want to lead the most excellent human life?, asks Andrew of the happiness- and productivity-obsessed Silicon Valley leaders. His answer is that optimizing your life and business is actually a formula for misery. A kind of Chief Philosophy Officer, Andrew summons ancient thinkers to probe eternal questions about a good life.

    Eliette & Marieke Staub
    Eliette & Marieke
    Switzerland's first KonMari pros

    The Staub twins embody the essence of how the KonMari method can impact one's life: reconnecting with one's self and designing the life one wants. Their objective is to help people live a more simple and happy life through their decluttered, joy-sparking living space.

    Francis Tseng
    Chief skeptic of Silicon Valley

    What can be so upsetting that it makes you create a game? Francis, a designer and software engineer created a startup simulator called The Founder whose deep cynicism was based on his own experience. He thinks tech companies wield great influence over people’s lives, but don’t always take responsibility for their actions.

    Troy Evans
    Founder of CommonSpace

    Burnt out by corporate change-management work, Troy started working from home. He learned quickly the value of having a coworking space and that the best versions of ourselves are expressed when we do so in a group. CommonSpace shows a new way of living, working and making connections.

    Alex Berezow
    Science writer

    Instead of sterile labs, Alex chose the big picture. He is the Senior Fellow of Biomedical Science at the American Council on Science and Health and former founding editor of RealClearScience. Alex enthusiastically opposes Stephen Hawking's predictions about the gloomy future of humanity.

    Ted Chiang
    Superstar of new millennium sci-fi

    Would you reprogram your own mind? Would you adopt a computer program? Multi-award winning superstar of sci-fi Ted Chiang's 'Story of Your Life' is described by many as the most important collection of short stories in the new millennium.

    David OReilly
    3D animation virtuoso

    Video games as philosophy? Sure. Reading the Bible word-for-word backwards for inspiration? This is the surreal world of filmmaker and artist David OReilly, whose 3D animated films recently stormed the world of games and interactive art.

    Antonio García Martínez
    García Martínez
    Sternest critic of the tech world

    Frantic pivots, enthusiastic ass-kissing and excruciating internal politics: welcome to Silicon Valley. Ex-Facebook employee and author of the bestselling 'Chaos Monkeys' Antonio Garcia Martinez wants people to know the Valley isn’t really the way it’s portrayed.

    Mason Bretan
    Music technology whizzkid

    So long, Beethoven. Music technology whizzkid Mason Bretan and his four-armed, marimba-playing robot Shimon have toured the world. The droid not only plays music, but it crafts its own tunes.

    Ryan Sumo
    Moral conscience of the gaming world, founder of Squeaky Wheel

    Forget your first world problems, and see what really matters. Artist of award-winning, cult games Ryan Sumo brings attention to current affairs in developing countries and creates strategy and simulation games that encourage critical thinking.

    Paola Diana
    Glass ceiling cracker

    Trained in martial arts, the entrepreneur, author, activist Paola knows how to fight the impossible. She believes that women will save the world and her mission is to empower and support them.

    Previously at brain bar

    Brain Bar 2016

    Brain Bar is the biggest European festival on the future. Lively, ambitious and unique, Brain Bar Budapest creates the stage for top trendsetters, decision-makers and challengers to exchange ideas in unusual and unrestrained conversation.

    We call it
    the un-conference
    sir martin sorrell
    Sir Martin
    Founder & Ceo of WPP
    To think about the future differently, to think about technology differently, to think about your place in it. That's what Brain Bar does.
    World's best known living astronaut

    Previous speakers

    Niall Ferguson
    Professor of History at Harvard University

    Niall Ferguson is Professor of History at Harvard University, a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, his acclaimed books include The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World (also an International Emmy Award-winning PBS/Channel 4 documentary series), and Economies Die and Civilization: The West and the Rest.

    He is a regular contributor to television and radio on both sides of the Atlantic and a prolific commentator on contemporary politics and economics.

    Richard Florida
    Best-selling author

    Richard Florida is the Director of the Martin Prosperity Institute at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management, Global Research Professor at New York University, and the founder of the Creative Class Group, which works closely with governments and companies worldwide. He is perhaps the world’s leading urbanist, “as close to a household name as it is possible for an urban theorist to be in America,” according to The Economist. Florida is the author of several global best sellers, including the award-winning The Rise of the Creative Class – “one of the best business books of all time” – 800-CEO-READ.

    Sugata Mitra
    Leading evangelist of technology in education

    Sugata Mitra is at the forefront of a new approach to education which challenges how we teach today’s children in a technological age. He is Professor of Educational Technology at Newcastle University, UK and previously a Visiting Professor at MIT in the US. Sugata is currently working on the School in the Cloud, which is the culmination of over a decade of research and observations from all over the world.

    Neil Harbisson
    The world’s first cyborg

    Neil Harbisson is a Catalan-raised, British-born contemporary artist and cyborg activist best known for having an antenna implanted in his skull and for being officially recognized as a cyborg by a government. The antenna allows him to perceive visible and invisible colours such as infrareds and ultraviolets via sound waves. The antenna’s internet connection allows him to receive colors from space as well as images, videos, music or phone calls directly into his head via external devices such as mobile phones or satellites. Harbisson identifies himself as a cyborg, he feels both his mind and body are united to cybernetics. He doesn’t feel he is using or wearing technology, instead he feels he is technology. His artworks investigate the relationship between colour and sound, experiment the boundaries of human perception and explore the use of artistic expression via sensory extensions. In 2010 he co­-founded the Cyborg Foundation with Moon Ribas, an international organization that aims to help humans become cyborgs, defend cyborg rights and promote cyborgism as a social and artistic movement.

    Ken Goldberg
    Artist, Professor of Robotics at UC Berkeley

    Ken Goldberg is an artist and UC Berkeley professor. He has published over 200 peer-reviewed technical papers on algorithms for robotics, automation, and social information filtering. Goldberg directs, among others, the Automation Sciences Research Lab and his inventions have been awarded eight US Patents. He’s art installations are related to his research and have been exhibited at venues such as Buenos Aires Biennial, and the ICC in Tokyo.

    Tina Saaby
    Chief City Architect of Copenhagen

    Tina Saaby has been the Chief City Architect at the City of Copenhagen since September 2010. She inspires, facilitates, advices, and coaches the politicians and City Administration. Her responsibility is to help defining architectural guidelines and visions in developing the city based on the Architectural Policy.

    Tina Saaby is also Visiting Professor at Sheffield University and external examiner at University of Roskilde, University of Copenhagen and she is the Chairman of the Advisory board at The Royal Academy of Arts School of Architecture, Design and Conservation.

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