Big Ideas, Grand Challenges Series





The Honors College Big Ideas, Grand Challenges Series is designed to engage Honors, the Arizona campus, and our community in dialogue about important topics that affect us all. From the futures of pandemics and education, to food production and human communications, each event in the series features a moderator and a group of experts who will approach the topic from a range of perspectives.

Open to the public and supported by the Provost’s Investment Fund, the Series is sponsored by the Honors College, which focuses on interdisciplinary thinking and engagement with the wide range of ideas, interests, and intellectual emphases on campus and in society. The Honors College is leveraging internal (i.e., campus-based) and external experts to model how we consider new ideas and engage in civil discourse with people who bring different perspectives and experiences into the discussion. Through these round table conversations, our goal is to model and strengthen perspective-taking, empathy, creativity and critical thinking as we address common challenges.


2021-22 Emphases: 

In the 2021-22 academic year, the Honors College Big Ideas, Grand Challenges Series is focused on the future. Honors students are building skills and understanding that will be essential to solving problems and addressing challenges. As all of us – those within the university and those outside of it -- look ahead to what life looks like in the years and decades to come, what must we bear in mind? How does our thinking about the future shape our planning in the present? This year, panels of experts will dialogue about the future of four topics: pandemics, education, food production, and human communication.

Join us virtually as we engage in dynamic conversations about the future.


2021-22 Schedule: 

September 29, 2021: The Future of Pandemics 

October 27, 2021: The Future of Education

January, 2022: The Future of Food Production

February, 2022: The Future of Human Communication

Final dates, times, locations, and registration information will be available soon.


Recordings of our 2020-2021 talks are available through the links below: