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Feed your head at Chicago Ideas Week

By Chris Bentley in Arts & Entertainment on Oct 6, 2011 4:40PM

2011_10_6_ideas_week.jpg Sunday marks the start of the first Chicago Ideas Week, a brain-food buffet curated by Groupon co-founder Brad Keywell that will run Oct. 10-16.

Among the 100 scheduled speakers are President Bill Clinton, TIME magazine managing editor Richard Stengel and Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.

Download the schedule here for a full list of speakers and events. Topics run the gamut from architecture to sports. Monday evening will be a “Megatalk” with the mayors of Atlanta, New York and, of course, Chicago.

Keywell told Chicago Magazine he was inspired by events like The Aspen Institute and TED:

“Right now, in the city, in the Midwest, there’s just unfortunately not a pinnacle or a focal point around innovation.”

That might come across as a slight to the Chicago Humanities Festival, which has hosted a similar event for 22 years. According to Crain’s, Keywell spoke with Humanities Fest Executive Director Stuart Flack about cross-promoting with Ideas Week, which ends the same day that the Humanities Festival kicks off. Chicago News Cooperative called Ideas Week “a polite but indisputable battle for the minds of Chicago.”

Discussion series politics aside, Ideas Week is worth a look. Most events are $15 and require online registration in advance.