Two heads (Discourse)

7.20pm to 8.45pm, Friday 27 October

The Theatre

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  • Are two heads better than one?

    Credit: Niels Corfitzen

Price

Standard £20

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Concession £15

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Free for Members and Patrons

Event description

Join us to make history as we host the first ever Royal Institution Discourse to be given by two speakers it its 192 year history.

Humans are intensely social creatures. Learning from each other and working together was a key part in our evolutionary development. But what are the advantages of working together, and are two heads always better than one when making decisions? Join Chris and Uta Frith as they explore the science of collaboration.

About the speakers

Chris Frith is an Honorary Research Fellow at the Institute of Philosophy at UCL and has published widely on social cognition, schizophrenia and other neuroscience topics. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society, the British Academy, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Uta Frith is an Emeritus Professor of Cognitive Development at University College London. She is best known for her research on autism spectrum disorders. Her aim is to discover the underlying cognitive causes of developmental disorders and to link them to behavioural symptoms as well as to brain systems. She recently became president of the British Science Association.

More about Discourses

Discourses are one of the Ri’s oldest and most prestigious series of talks. Since 1825, audiences in the theatre have witnessed countless mind-expanding moments, including the first public liquefaction of air by James Dewar, the announcement of the electron by J.J. Thomson and over 100 lectures by Michael Faraday. In more recent times, we have had Nobel laureates, Fields medal winners, scientists, authors and artists – all from the cutting-edge of their field. Discourses are an opportunity for the best and brightest to share their work with the world.

Steeped in nearly two centuries of tradition, a Discourse is more than just a lecture. To keep the focus on the topic, presenters begin sharply at 7:30pm without introduction and we lock the speaker into a room ten minutes ahead of the start (legend has it that a speaker once tried to escape!) We also ask guests to dress smartly to add to the sense of occasion.

Discourses are free for members - consider joining today.

Find out more about the history of the Friday Evening Discourses on our blog.

Food and Drink

The Atrium cafe will be open before and after the talk. Check out the delicious menu and call 020 7670 2973 or email ri@ri.ac.uk to reserve your table.

There will also be a cash bar on the Mezzanine before the Discourse, where you can relax, meet likeminded people with an interest in science, and have a drink.

Dress code

The dress code for this event is smart (ties optional, no jeans or trainers). Please note, if you are not dressed smartly you may be asked to sit in the gallery.

Timing note

Please be aware that this Discourse starts at 7.30pm, but all attendees must be seated in the theatre by 7.20pm. This is half an hour earlier than previous Discourses. Latecomers will be admitted to the gallery.

Doors will open at approximately 6.45pm

Filming

This event will be filmed and on the Ri Channel within a few months. Subscribe for free to hear when new videos are released.

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