Home Lifestyle NewsArt & Culture News Check out this series of inspirational debates and discussions in London, October 2014 – February 2015

Check out this series of inspirational debates and discussions in London, October 2014 – February 2015

29th Sep 14 3:20 pm

From Alain de Botton to Google, The Midtown Big Ideas Exchange is well worth checking out

This content is brought to you by our partners, inmidtown

On 29th October esteemed philosopher and author Alain de Botton will launch the first of 12 landmark events which will bring together leading thinkers and the great commercial minds of the vibrant Midtown business community. This is the first time a major London district will unite its business community – diverse and dynamic businesses from the worlds of technology, law, business, arts and culture – to create a unique knowledge and ideas sharing platform.

THE MIDTOWN BIG IDEAS EXCHANGE, an innovative new initiative launched by inmidtown – which represents over 570 businesses in Bloomsbury, Holborn and St Giles – in collaboration with The School of Life, is a series of discussions and debates, which will inspire and encourage businesses to interact and learn from each other, share their business knowledge and discuss important themes relating to work and life.

Sharing a new perspective on the professional world, Alain de Botton will kick start proceedings with the lecture “The virtues of modern business”. Alain will discuss the joys and sorrows of contemporary working life and explore what the world of work really means to us. Starting at 6pm on the 29th October 2014 at the Bloomsbury Ballroom, the tickets are open to Londoners and available to buy through The School of Life.

The further 11 events, which are all open to the public, will run from the 5 November 2014 to 17 February 2015 and will include four panel discussions, bringing together some of Midtowns most prominent business leaders in a lively debate.

Tickets for Alain de Botton’s, ‘Virtues of modern business’ are available to buy for £30 through The School of Life www.theschooloflife.com

Tickets for the following 11 events are limited, for free and available through www.inmidtown.org/bigideas


[full details can be found on www.inmidtown.org/bigideas]

29th October 2014, 6-9pm : Alain de Botton: The Virtues of Modern Business

Chaired by Tony Matharu, Managing Director of The Grange Hotel

Location: The Bloomsbury Ballroom

5th November 2014, 6.30-8pm : Ben Hammersley: 10 things you need to know about the future

Introduction by: Caroline Macleod-Smith, Yahoo!

Location: Rosewood London 

11th November 2014, 6.30-8pm: Prof. Vincent Walsh: Understanding the creative brain

Introduction by: Anita O’Brien, Director of The Cartoon Museum

Location: The Cartoon Museum

19th November 2014, 6.30-8pm: Panel: Are we all creative professionals now?

Hosted and Located: Farrer & Co

Five of Midtown’s leading business minds, Elliot Moss, Development Director at Mishcon de Reya; Lucas Diestrick, Commissioning Editor at Thames & Hudson; Alex McCrindle, Creative Director at Yahoo; Andrew Jones, Managing Director, AECOM; and Anthony Misquitta, Partner, Farrer & Co – share their experiences and opinions on where creativity belongs, why it is so important, what it really means and how it can feed our work. The panel is chaired by artist-curator Cathy Haynes.

25th November 2014, 6.30-8pm: Panel: Can we achieve a tech/life balance?

Hosted and Located: Google

This will draw on a panel of tech experts including comedian David Schneider; a senior bod from Google, digital commentator Tom Chatfield and technology expert Jasmine Gardener– to explore the ways we can enjoy a healthy relationship with technology.

2nd December 2014, 8-10am: A Philosophy Breakfast: Truth, Lies and Business

Introduction by: Tony Mattaru, Managing Director, Grange Hotels

Location: Grange Holborn Hotel Sky Bar


14th January 2015, 6.30-8pm: Brennan Jacoby: Building Trust

Introduction by: Tony Matharu, Managing Director, Grange Hotels

Location: Grange Holborn Hotel

21st January 2015, 6.30-8pm: Panel: Leadership in times of change

Hosted and Located: Mitsubishi Corporation

Hosted by psychologist Maurits Kalff with Andrew Fraser, Senior Advisor at Mitsubishi Corporation and Harriet Hindsmarsh, Business Development Director at Aecom. The panel will discuss the changing demographics of the workforce, to roles of compassion in the boardroom and will explore new models of leadership designed to thrive in the age of change.

29th January 2015, 6.30-8pm: Oliver James: The joys and perils of ambition

Introduction by: Ffion Griffith, Global Director of Human Resources at Olswang

Location: Olswang

4th February 2015, 6.30-8pm: Panel: Work: love it or hate it?

Hosted and Located: AECOM

Led by writer and broadcaster Gaylene Gould, will encourage buisness leaders to consider the essential elements for fulfilment at work. Panelists include Nicola Gillen, EMEA Practice Lead AECOM; and Anita O’Brien, Director at the Cartoon Museum.

11th February 2015, 6.30-8pm: Conversation Cocktails: A Happy, Healthy Workplace

Hosted and Located: Hoxton Holborn

17th February 2015, 6.30-8pm: Nic Marks: Happiness works

Location: Mishcon de Reya

Full list of participating businesses include: AECOM, Mishcon de Reya, Olswang, Mitsubishi Corporation, Google, Yahoo, The Cartoon Museum, Thames & Hudson, Farrer & Co, Hoxton Holborn, Rosewood London and the Grange Holborn Hotel.

Tickets for Alain de Botton’s ‘Virtues for modern business’ are available to buy for £30 through The School of Life www.theschooloflife.com

Tickets for the following 11 events are limited, for free and available through www.inmidtown.org/bigideas


Midtown is an unrivalled location in the middle of town, encompassing Bloomsbury, Holborn and St Giles, with the City to the east and the West End’s retail district to the west. For centuries some of the sharpest business brains in the country have overseen business excellence and been part of the fabric of Midtown.

Today Midtown is home to a diverse, open-minded and forward-looking business community where rich historical and cultural institutions [British Museum and The Cartoon Museum], leading tech companies [Yahoo!, LinkedIn, Skype and Google], and long-established legal and business firms work alongside each other [Olswang, Mishcon de Reya and Mitsubishi Corporation].


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