TEDxWesternU speakers to share world-changing ideas

TEDx will feature 11 speakers, addressing a live audience of 100 Western students representing all faculties and chosen through an anonymous selection process, which is now complete.

 March 26, 2013

 March 26, 2013

Diving with sharks. Creating “skin” for buildings. Sailing with pirates on the fringes of capitalism. These pioneering ideas and more are all part of TEDxWesternU, coming to Western University’s Paul Davenport Theatre April 5. The innovative and independently organized event, designed to foster meaningful change, creative solutions and valuable learning, announced its full line-up of speakers today under the theme: “Impact. Innovation. Insight.”

“We have a fantastic team of volunteers who have dedicated themselves to bringing new ideas and innovative creativity to students at Western and audiences around the world,” says Vivek Morzaria, Co-Chair of TEDxWesternU. “TEDxWesternU promises to expand minds, bring fresh perspectives and inspire meaningful change.”

The event will feature 11 speakers, addressing a live audience of 100 Western students representing all faculties and chosen through an anonymous selection process, which is now complete.

A satellite location has also been established at the University Students’ Council Chambers (Room 301 UCC) in the heart of campus, where students, faculty and staff will be able to view the talks via live video. TEDxWesternU will also be streaming live on the web at

Speaking at TEDxWesternU are:

• Tima Bansal, professor and Canada Research Chair in Business Sustainability (CRC), Richard Ivey School of Business

• Douglas Birkenshaw, Principal at B+H Architects

• Jessica Grahn, cognitive neuroscientist at The Brain and Mind Institute, Western University

• Jesse Hirsch, internet strategist, researcher and broadcaster

• Gregory Kopp, professor and CRC in wind engineering, Western University

• Andrew Lewis, award-winning art director and designer

• Todd Reichert and Cameron Robertson, aviators and innovators

• Rob Stewart, film writer, producer and director

• Barbara Willis-Sweete, film director

• Jean Philippe Vergne, assistant professor, Richard Ivey School of Business

Additional information about TEDxWesternU can be found at

About TEDx, x = independently organized event

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized. (Subject to certain rules and regulations.)

About TED

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. Started as a four-day conference in California 26 years ago, TED has grown to support those world-changing ideas with multiple initiatives. At TED, the world’s leading thinkers and doers are asked to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes. Talks are then made available, free, at TED speakers have included Bill Gates, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Benoit Mandelbrot, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Isabel Allende and former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Two major TED events are held each year: The TED Conference takes place every spring in on the West Coast (along with a parallel conference, TEDActive), and TEDGlobal is held each summer in Edinburgh, Scotland. TED’s media initiatives include, where new TEDTalks are posted daily; the new TED Conversations, enabling broad conversations among TED fans; and the Open Translation Project, which provides subtitles and interactive transcripts as well as the ability for any TEDTalk to be translated by volunteers worldwide. TED has established the annual TED Prize, where exceptional individuals with a wish to change the world are given the opportunity to put their wishes into action; TEDx, which offers individuals or groups a way to host local, self-organized events around the world; and the TED Fellows program, helping world-changing innovators from around the globe to become part of the TED community and, with its help, amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities. For information about TED’s upcoming conferences, visit

Follow TED on Twitter at, or on Facebook at

MEDIA CONTACT: Stephen Ledgley, Senior Media Relations Officer, Western University, 519-661-2111 x85283 or



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