Now in its sixth year, Chicago Ideas Week gathers some of the brightest minds in the world in Chicago for a week packed with seminars, demonstrations and hands-on activities. Held throughout the city Oct. 17 to 23, CIW hosts more than 150 events with topics ranging from our current police climate and the refugee crises to lighter fare like comedy and product design. Notable speakers this year, which will see about 30,000 attendees during the course of the week, include former U.S. Treasury Secretary Robert Reich, Skinnygirl founder Bethenny Frankel, entertainment exec Ari Emanuel (who happens to be the mayor’s brother), real estate mogul Sam Zell, Black Lives Matter co-creator Alicia Garza, producer Brian Grazer, ESPN sports anchor Linda Cohn and so many more.
One of the cooler pieces to CIW this year is the addition of Portals, which allows people in Chicago to step into a hyper-charged shipping container and talk to people all over the world. Portals, which is set up at Daley Plaza, requires you to book a time slot, but you can also do a walk-up session and wait in line. Once inside, you’ll talk to people via live video link in Rwanda, Iraq, Myanmar and other places you’ll likely never get to. The CIW schedule is packed and events start at $15. Are you ready to get some new ideas?