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York Festival of Ideas is well underway with a jam-packed programme of inspiring – and mostly free – events for all ages and interests.

York Festival of Ideas

Various locations

Till Sun Jun 18

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If you’ve been unlucky enough to miss top speakers including Ed Balls, former politician and star of Strictly 2016, and Peter Lord, co-founder of Aardman Studios, never fear, there are still plenty more exciting events to catch.

But you’ll need to hurry to ensure you don’t miss out, as this year’s festival ends on Sunday 18 June. Look out for more than 150 free events including world-class speakers, exhibitions, theatre, music, film, workshops, guided walks and much more.

Here are 9 events you really don’t want to miss:

For What It’s Worth…
Monday 12 June @ 6.30pm, Explore York

Renowned American medieval crime writer Candace Robb discusses the York setting for her books and the creation of a fictional world in a real environment. Turn sleuth and consider what types of object you might find in homes and public buildings that could motivate a crime. What was worth risking everything to possess and what could make an object so desirable it was prized above a life?

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A Comedy of Us Jews
Monday 12 and Tuesday 13 June @ 7pm, Friends Meeting House

In 1940, Jac Weinstein of the Helsinki Jewish community wrote a light-hearted short musical about a Jewish clothing merchant who falls in love with his Parisian mannequin. The only reference to the war then raging in Europe is a brief mention of the bombing of Paris.

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Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran: A masterclass
Tuesday 13 June @ 6pm, University of York

Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran form the most successful television comedy scriptwriting partnership active today. Their award-winning successes include Birds of a Feather, Goodnight Sweetheart and The New Statesman. Join them for a masterclass as they share some of the secrets of their craft, via examples from some of their most celebrated series.

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Changes and Challenges in Healthcare Focus Day
Wednesday 14 June from 11.30am, University of York

What does the future of healthcare look like? What are the main challenges in the years ahead and what changes are on their way? We explore the mental health challenges for young people, talk to Simon Stevens, Chief Executive Officer of NHS England, and find out how technological innovations such as IBM Watson Health are improving patient care, patient experience and patient outcome.

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Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Work
Wednesday 14 June @ 12pm, University of York

Psychologist David Biggs and robotics engineer Joaquim Ferreira discuss whether Artificial Intelligence (AI) will replace us in the workplace of today and the future. Join them for a demonstration of your potential robot replacements.

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Peter York’s Storage Unit
Wednesday 14 June @ 7.40pm, University of York

Author and broadcaster Peter York examines a growing social trend in terms of his own experience; having half his life stored in room-sized wooden crates in a West London depository. He discusses the curious accumulation of objects large and small, valuable and worthless, which has built up over the last 25 years and wonders what to do with them. Realising he is not alone in his plight, he reaches out to fellow sufferers…

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The Future of Work Focus Day
Friday 16 June from 10.15am, University of York

A recent Gallup Poll of ‘global desires’ revealed that everyone in the world shares one basic desire: a good job with steady hours. This desire often comes before family, democracy or even religious freedom. But how achievable is this now or in the future? Working with the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, we’ll explore the reality of living with low-paid or insecure employment; the influence of robotics on our jobs; and what value and meaning we get from our work.

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Books as Instruments of Change
Saturday 17 June @ 4pm, University of York

As the carriers of civilisation, books have a long, complex and sometimes turbulent history; they record moments in time, tell stories and share information. In cases such as Tyndale’s biblical texts and Lady Chatterley’s Lover, books have acted as social disruptors and agents of change. Our panel of speakers, including Brian Cummings of the University of York, explores the role and power of books throughout history and today.

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Dad You Suck
Sunday 18 June @ 5pm, University of York

The festival finale falls on Father’s Day, so what better way to celebrate than in the company of journalist Tim Dowling as he lays bare his experience of fatherhood. The author of Dad You Suck, he talks honestly and with his own brand of humour about the difficult task of being a dad.

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