Chicago Ideas Week - Blog

In your recent wanderings around the city (or maybe just on your commute to work), you may have seen the occasional yellow balloon here and there. What are these eye-catching balloons with intriguing key words and phrases promoting, you may ask? Prepare to be challenged, inspired and connected next week as Chicago Ideas Week makes its glorious return this year.

In its third year, Chicago Ideas Week is a platform for the presentation, the exchange, and the development of simply that: ideas. This inclusive week of events, discussions, and talks is rooted in the goal of stimulating new intiatives locally for global thought leaders, create new connections and collaborations, and establish a community of people who are driven to achieve great things across all fields.

Last year's event attracted 25,000 attendees with 235 speakers and over 130 events, and this year will be no disappointment. With speakers ranging from Dr. Buzz Aldrin, to the Winklevoss twins, to Chef Cat Cora and director M. Night Shyamalan, the only question lays in which event will you attend first. Chicago Ideas Week will cover talks on a wide array of topics, such as entrepreneurship, scientific breakthroughs, hip-hop and the Middle East, and countless more.  That's a lot to take in - here's how to break it down and get the most out of Chicago Ideas Week.


Check out a CIW Talk for a 90-minute session that features 4-6 speakers giving short form talk on the aforementioned topics, including the creative process to healthcare, finance to the meaning of life (pretty full spectrum of ideas). These talks are the ideal event for those of us looking for a lasting inspiration that extends far beyond the boundaries of Chicago Ideas Week.

Edison Talks

Edison Talks a longer in length, stretching for an entire day-long gathering that features provocative presentations and performances by world-renowned visionaries, designed to create connections among the audience members. 


CIW Labs are a geat way to experience hands-on idea making. They offer behind the scenes adventures that give participants unique glimpses into the inner workings of businesses and institutions that are otherwise unavailable to the public. Go behind the curtains at theaters, into the boardrooms at leading businesses and discover "how-it-works" workshops. These are must-experience events for the tactile and curious learner!

Tickets Available - Act Quickly!

Check out the full schedule of events to buy tickets for individual talks, edison talks, labs and more - and act fast! These tickets are a hot commodity amongst Chicago thinkers like yourself.