Global speaking event TED returns to NZ

By Ben Chapman-Smith

Rachel Botsman, sharing innovator, speaks at TEDGlobal 2012 in Edinburgh, Scotland last month. Auckland will host a local TED event in October. Photo/ Supplied
Rachel Botsman, sharing innovator, speaks at TEDGlobal 2012 in Edinburgh, Scotland last month. Auckland will host a local TED event in October. Photo/ Supplied

Organisers are putting together a line-up of top New Zealand speakers to feature at a local version of the global movement called TEDx.

After starting as a four-day conference in California 25 years ago, TED has spawned off into local TEDx events which are now held in 1200 cities worldwide.

Auckland will host its third TEDx event in October and the list will include a number of top scientists, and world leading professionals, artists, educators and technologists, organisers said.

Event producer Elliott Blade is planning on getting a group of eighteen "impressive New Zealand names" on stage rather than bringing in international speakers, said spokeswoman Kirsten McConchie.

The Auckland event will be run according to the international TEDx format where speakers had 18 minutes to talk.

Previous speakers at New Zealand events have included Sir Ray Avery, Wendy McGuinness and Jonathan Milne.

The TED name comes from the event's original purpose, to bring people together people from technology, entertainment and design.

The annual TED Conference at Long Beach, California, features some of the world's leading thinkers giving 18-minute long talks.

Past speakers include Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Richard Dawkins, Bill Gates, Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page, Sir Richard Branson, and former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

There are more than 900 videos on the TED website and 16,500 YouTube videos have received more than 42 million views.

Its website states: "We believe passionately in the power of ideas to change attitudes, lives and ultimately, the world.

"So we're building here a clearinghouse that offers free knowledge and inspiration from the world's most inspired thinkers."

Auckland TEDx will also feature three musical interludes and will be held at the ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre on October 6, 10am - 5:30pm.

Confirmation of speakers will be announced soon, as well as the release of tickets.

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