Onora O'Neill examines extreme situations where danger and terror undermine trust. Read more
Onora O'Neill: A Question of Trust: 2002
Trust and Terror
Onora O'Neill examines extreme situations where danger and terror undermine trust.
Called to Account
Onora O'Neill examines the quest for more accountability in government and institutions.
Trust and Transparency
Onora O'Neill examines how transparency and trust are related.
Licence to Deceive
Onora O'Neill asks how we decide when to trust those who inform us about the wider world.
Vilayanur S. Ramachandran: The Emerging Mind: 2003
Phantoms in the Brain
Professor Ramachandran discusses the functionality of the brain in relation to neurology.
Synapses and the Self
Professor Ramachandran examines how we 'see' and become conscious of our surroundings.
The Artful Brain
Professor Ramachandran examines the meaning of art from a neurological perspective.
Purple Numbers and Sharp Cheese
Professor Ramachandran examines the phenomenon of synesthesia.
Neuroscience - the New Philosophy
Professor Ramachandran explores how neuroscience alters man's understanding of himself.
Wole Soyinka: Climate of Fear: 2004
The Changing Mask of Fear
Wole Soyinka considers the nature of fear and its impact on individuals and society.
Power and Freedom
Wole Soyinka examines the difficulties in telling friend from foe in a climate of fear.
Rhetoric that Binds and Blinds
In his third lecture, Wole Soyinka examines the power of political and religious rhetoric.
A Quest for Dignity
Wole Soyinka explores the notion of dignity within a climate of fear.
I am Right; You are Dead
In his final Reith Lecture, Wole Soyinka examines the causes and impact of fanaticism.
Alec Broers: The Triumph of Technology: 2005
Technology will Determine the Future of the Human Race
Lord Broers sets out his belief that technology will hold the key to the future.
In his second Reith Lecture, Lord Broers explores the origins of modern technologies.
Innovation and Management
Does modern innovation demand new approaches to product development?
Nanotechnology and Nanoscience
Lord Broers explores the origins and impact of nanotechnology.
Risk and Responsibility
In his final lecture, Lord Broers explores the responsibilities of the technologist.
Daniel Barenboim: In the Beginning Was Sound
Conductor Daniel Barenboim points a way forward for everyone through music.
Daniel Barenboim: In the Beginning was Sound: 2006
In the Beginning was Sound
Musician and conductor Daniel Barenboim examines the physical phenomenon of sound.
The Neglected Sense
Daniel Barenboim examines what he calls 'the neglected sense'; the ear.
The Magic of Music
Daniel Barenboim argues that classical music can and should be accessible to all.
Meeting in Music
Daniel Barenboim examines how music has the power to bring people together.
The Power of Music
Daniel Barenboim considers the difference between power and strength in music and in life.
Jeffrey Sachs: Bursting at the Seams: 2007
Bursting at the Seams
Jeffrey Sachs delivers the first of five lectures, recorded at The Royal Society in London
Survival in the Anthropocene
Sachs discusses China's emergence as an economic superpower and the effect on climate.
The Great Convergence
Jeffrey Sachs talks about the need for international cooperation to achieve peace.
Economic Solidarity for a Crowded Planet
Jeffrey Sachs delivers the fourth of five lectures. He considers the challenges of poverty
Global Politics in a Complex Age
Jeffrey Sachs calls for a new Enlightenment to help make globalisation work for all.
Jonathan Spence: Chinese Vistas: 2008
Spence reflects on China's most enduring thinker, Confucius.
Spence examines China's relations with the United Kingdom through three centuries.
Spence explores the relationship between China and the US over two centuries.
The Body Beautiful
Spence discusses how Chinese ideas of sport and athleticism have slowly evolved.
Michael Sandel: A New Citizenship: 2009
Markets and Morals
Prof Michael Sandel considers the expansion and moral limits of markets.
Morality in Politics
Michael Sandel asks what role, if any, there is for moral argument in politics.
Genetics and Morality
Professor Sandel considers how we should use our ever-increasing scientific knowledge.
A New Politics of the Common Good
Professor Sandel makes the case for a moral and civic renewal in democratic politics.
Martin Rees: Scientific Horizons: 2010
The Scientific Citizen
Prof Martin Rees asks who we should trust to explain the risks we face.
Surviving the Century
Does science have the answers to help us save our planet?
What We'll Never Know
Professor Martin Rees explains where the limits of our scientific knowledge lie.
The Runaway World
Prof Rees calls for the UK to stay at the forefront of scientific research and discovery.
Securing Freedom: 2011
Aung San Suu Kyi: Liberty
Aung San Suu Kyi explores what freedom means in the first of the 2011 Reith Lectures.
Aung San Suu Kyi: Dissent
Aung San Suu Kyi examines what drives people to dissent in the second Reith Lecture 2011.
Eliza Manningham-Buller: Terror
Eliza Manningham-Buller reflects on 9/11 in the first of her Reith Lectures 2011.
Eliza Manningham-Buller: Security
Assessing the role of security and intelligence services in a democracy.
Eliza Manningham-Buller: Freedom
Ex M15 boss Eliza Manningham-Buller discusses foreign policy in her third Reith Lecture.
Niall Ferguson: The Rule of Law and Its Enemies: 2012
The Human Hive
Niall Ferguson argues that institutions determine the success or failure of nations.
The Darwinian Economy
Niall Ferguson reflects on the causes and lessons of the global financial crisis.
The Landscape of the Law
Niall Ferguson asks if different systems of law are key to economic success.
Civil and Uncivil Societies
Niall Ferguson asks what constitutes a vibrant and independent civil society.
Grayson Perry: Playing to the Gallery: 2013
Democracy Has Bad Taste
Grayson Perry analyses the complex process of judging quality in contemporary art.
Beating the Bounds
Grayson Perry questions the often-heard assertion that anything can be art.
Nice Rebellion, Welcome In!
Grayson Perry asks if revolution is a defining idea in art, or has it met its end?
I Found Myself in the Art World
Grayson Perry discusses the painful yet rewarding process of becoming an artist.
Dr Atul Gawande: The Future of Medicine
Why Do Doctors Fail?
Surgeon and writer Dr Atul Gawande explores the nature of fallibility in medicine.
The Century of the System
Atul Gawande calls for a radical rethink of medical systems to transform healthcare.
The Problem of Hubris
Atul Gawande calls for a new approach to the 'great unfixables' - ageing and death.
The Idea of Wellbeing
Atul Gawande calls for a new focus on systems to ensure doctors work more effectively.
Professor Stephen Hawking: Black Holes
Do black holes have no hair?
Professor Stephen Hawking delivers the first of his BBC Reith Lectures on black holes.
Black holes ain't as black as they are painted
Professor Stephen Hawking delivers the second of his BBC Reith Lectures on black holes.
Kwame Anthony Appiah: Mistaken Identities
Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah says we overestimate scripture in our view of faith.
Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah argues against a mythical and romantic view of nationhood
Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah argues for a world free of racial fixations.
Philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah asks us to give up the idea of western civilisation.
The Day Is for the Living
Art can bring the dead back to life argues novelist Hilary Mantel.
The Iron Maiden
How do we construct our pictures of the past asks Hilary Mantel.
Silence Grips the Town
The story of how historical obsession killed a Polish writer, told by Hilary Mantel.
Can These Bones Live?
Hilary Mantel on how historical fiction can make the past come to life.
Hilary Mantel on how fiction changes when adapted for stage or screen.
Michael Sandel on Bertrand Russell
Significant international thinkers deliver the BBC's flagship annual lecture series
Anand Menon on Robert Birley
Brian Cox on Robert Oppenheimer
Grayson Perry on Nikolaus Pevsner
Angela Stent on George Kennan
War and Humanity
Margaret MacMillan asks if war is an essential part of being human.
Fearing and Loving: Making Sense of the Warrior
Margaret MacMillan explores our complex relationship with the people who go to war.
Civilians and War
Margaret MacMillan examines the role of civilians as supporters and victims of conflict.
Managing the Unmanageable
Margaret MacMillan assesses attempts to constrain and justify conflict.
War's Fatal Attraction
Margaret MacMillan examines how we remember and represent war in art.
2019: Jonathan Sumption
1/5. Law's Expanding Empire
Jonathan Sumption argues that the law is taking over the space once occupied by politics
2/5. In Praise of Politics
Jonathan Sumption explains how democracy can accommodate opposing opinions and interests
3/5. Human Rights and Wrongs
Jonathan Sumption argues that courts have usurped power via human rights law
4/5. Rights and the Ideal Constitution
Jonathan Sumption assess the pros and cons of written and unwritten constitutions
5/5. Shifting the Foundations
Jonathan Sumption argues against Britain adopting a written constitution
Landmark: George Eliot's Mill on the Floss
With Rebecca Mead, Fiona Shaw, Philip Davis, Dafydd Daniel and Peggy Reynolds.
Legacies of 1619
Sarah Forbes Bonetta
David Olusoga reflects on the life of Sara, a princess gifted to Queen Victoria.
Is there such a thing as a perfect diet?
Sarah Brett with late night discussion on the issues and stories that matter to you.
The Russian civil war: How the Soviets rose to power
How the events of the Russian civil war led to Lenin’s communist dictatorship