“And Now the Good News?” I’m pretty sure it was me who said TED talkers are always so optimistic…
1. Dr. Mitchell Besser. A Harvard-educated OB/GYN, Besser started the mothers2mothers program to reduce mother-to-child HIV/AIDS transmission in Africa. What sets Besser’s program apart? He reduces the burden on overwhelmed medical staff by training new HIV-positive mothers to provide support to other pregnant women in similar situations.
Also in the news: Researchers may be closing in on an AIDS vaccine.
2. Dr. Iain Hutchison. An oral and facial surgeon who started Saving Faces, the only charity in the U.K. devoted solely to the world-wide reduction of facial injuries and disease. Hutchison takes a uniquely philosophical and artistic approach to facial reconstruction.
3. Annie Lennox. Okay, so she’s not a doctor or researcher, she’s actually the most successful British pop musician in history. But like Bono, she’s also an AIDS activist, starting the SING campaign to prevent the spread of HIV in South Africa.
4. Nic Marks. If human unhappiness is a disease that needs curing, this Cambridge-educated “happiness researcher” is the doctor. Marks’ Happy Planet Index gathers evidence about what makes people happy, using it to promote policy that puts people’s happiness first.
5. Gero Miesenboeck. University of Oxford professor who has developed a way to control how live nerve cells work using light and genetic engineering. This somehow advances understanding of how the brain influences behaviour. I think I will have to wait until the lecture video comes out to understand this guy’s research.
6. Inge Missmahl. Added psychosocial care to primary healthcare in Afghanistan to help ease the psychological suffering of a people who have endured decades of conflict.
7. Dimitar Sasselov. This guy is an astronomer, but since he is trying to discover the origin of life, I thought he belonged on the list.
8. Sebastian Seung. An MIT professor using computers to study the wiring of the brain.
As always, quite a range. Can’t wait to see the videos when they are posted!
For a complete list of TEDGlobal 2010 speakers, click here.