The shows

Aug
3
Fri
2018
Abolish Childhood! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre (venue 7)
Aug 3 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Childhood is an injustice. Childhood infantilises, exploits, and oppresses children. Dr Philip Cook (The University of Edinburgh) argues that justice demands we abolish childhood. But how can we abolish childhood? And would abolishing childhood harm children?  Philip explains how society creates childhood through its laws. These laws aim to protect children, but they end up disempowering them. Children should be treated as equals, entitled to make their own choices about their lives. Treating children as equals might seem shocking, but abolishing childhood is the best thing we can do if we truly care about our children.

 

What Does Sex Sell? (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 3 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

Men are sexual predators and women are sex objects – or so advertisers tell us. ‘Sexy’ themes have been used in advertising for decades, based on the notion that ‘sex sells’. From yoghurt ads to shampoo, from perfume to fast food – these ads are ubiquitous and pasted in mainstream media. Researcher Kat Rezai (Edinburgh Napier University) broadens this debate to ask: what do ‘sexy’ ads really sell? Does it sell that ‘sexy’ product, or does it sell specific behaviours? Join Kat in this engaging and challenging discussion.

Aug
4
Sat
2018
Privacy is Dead, Long Live Privacy! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 4 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Your pictures and regrettable digital utterings are public… Google, Facebook and Amazon know… well, everything… You’re tracked and logged across cyberspace and there’s nothing you can do! Or is there?

Join Nicola Osborne (EDINA, University of Edinburgh) for a thrillingly nerdy adventure through new data protection rights that might just save your digital footprint!

Bring your questions, panics or your top tips – or tweet them to #codi2018 – to be part of the show!

‘A wonderfully witty and engaging speaker’ **** (BroadwayBaby 2017).

‘Reveals a collection of hidden gems and curiosities’ **** (BroadwayBaby 2016).

Hey, You at the Back! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 4 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

Did you always sit at the back in class? Were you bored? Or maybe you were one of the lucky ones who was engaged and inspired by a teacher? Many people have memories and strong views of the teaching they received at school and university. In this show, Dr Catherine Bovill (The University of Edinburgh), AKA ‘Dr Engagement’, will explore some of the highs and lows of teachers’ attempts to motivate students and make learning more exciting and engaging. In the interests of engagement, active audience participation will be encouraged!

Aug
5
Sun
2018
Who Do You Want to Wipe Your Bum? (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 5 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Bills, dating, raising children – life is challenging enough! Who wants to think about potential future health issues and care needs with more immediate matters to consider? Unfortunately, decisions don’t become easier when you are unwell or even suffering from cognitive limitations. Dr Anna Schneider (Edinburgh Napier University and Administrative Data Research Centre) works with big data to explore the care needs of Scottish people in their last year of life. She’ll highlight a few things worth thinking about – considering you’ve got an 80% chance of needing care at the end of life!

Silence in the Archive (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 5 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

How dangerous is silence in the archive? Archivist Rachel Hosker (The University of Edinburgh) returns to the Cabaret to explore the awkward and uncomfortable issue of silence in archives. Is silence a warning? What are the dangers for us all when stories are created and facts surmised to fill the gaps? From counter-cultures and forms of capturing life, to failure of the state, Rachel will explore the responsibility of the individual and the archivist in the process of remembering and reflecting society, and the role of the digital existence. Silence can be awkward…… and deafening.

Aug
6
Mon
2018
Dr Google Will See You Now! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 6 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Your supermarket knows when you’re pregnant; Google knows what medical conditions you have; Facebook could help your doctor diagnose you. What if Google sent a record of your search terms to your doctor to notify them of likely health conditions? What if Facebook sent an alert to midwives when pregnant ladies posted photos of them drinking alcohol or smoking? Join Mhairi Aitken (The University of Edinburgh) as she discusses how this information could be used, and have your own say on what should remain science fiction and what should become reality.

Listening to the Public is Dangerous! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 6 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

The public actively engage in decision-making processes, from referendums and elections to choosing singing contest winners. Often the results of these are contested and debated, and questions arise over whether the public made the right decision. Why, then, do researchers engage the public in their research and what could you bring to health and social science research? Join researcher Carol Porteous (The University of Edinburgh) to explore why researchers all across the UK are actively encouraging the public to engage with health and social science research and discover what this means for society.

Aug
7
Tue
2018
Doing MORE Drugs (Policy) (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 7 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Discussions about drug use and drug policy often involve stories – personal experience combined with knowledge gleamed from the media and other sources. But how are these stories translated into policy, and what validity should we give to personal experience in drug policy decisions? Using interview data and background experience, researcher Anna Ross (The University of Edinburgh) will be exploring personal narratives on drugs policy in Scotland. In particular, she looks at how stories can help us feel empathy and understanding, and create policy built on compassion and individual rights, as opposed to retribution and punishment.

What Keeps You Sharp? (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 7 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

Isn’t the expression ‘having a senior moment’ awful? Yet people often think of changes in their mental skills with age in terms of decline. While some people do experience these changes, others do not. So how do thinking skills change through midlife and beyond, and do our lifestyles affect those changes? Join Alan Gow (Heriot-Watt University) to explore results from “What Keeps You Sharp?”, a nationwide survey about attitudes towards the changes people expect in their thinking skills with age. See how your beliefs match the survey’s, and explore how all that matches current evidence.

Aug
8
Wed
2018
The Problem with Patriotism (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 8 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Do you love your country? Does the sight of your national flag fill you with pride? Whatever your nationality, patriotism is a hugely significant part of modern life, influencing everything from the cars we buy to the politicians we vote for. And yet we rarely take the time to question it. So join researcher David Mountain (The University of Edinburgh) as he explores the many problems with patriotism. Bringing together evidence and arguments from science, philosophy and politics, he’ll reveal why patriotism is illogical, dangerous and a complete waste of time.

Monolinguals, Where Are You? (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 8 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

Is anyone truly monolingual anymore? Knowing dialects, learning languages at school, and hearing migrant speakers make everybody ‘bilingual’ to some extent. This means that the mother tongue changes, in completely natural and predictable ways. It also means that people may not be as bad at learning languages as they often think they are. Join Professor Antonella Sorace of Bilingualism Matters (The University of Edinburgh) to discover what the extinction of monolingualism could be doing to your brain – and why it matters.

Aug
9
Thu
2018
Never a Soft Touch (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 9 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Scotland was once considered a ‘soft-touch’ on female genital mutilation (FGM), failing to protect 23,979 affected residents. Oonagh O’Brien (Queen Margaret University) and Jerusalem Barnabas (Waverley Care) argue that things are changing. Greater steps are now being taken to prevent and mitigate FGM, and there are stories of hope and resilience to be told. Join our speakers to learn more about the positive change happening right here in Scotland.

Science is F***ed (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 9 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

Science is thought of as the definitive truth of our time. It claims to sit at the apex of the tree of knowledge. But there’s a problem: most scientific findings are (possibly) false. If this is the case, then science may no longer be able to inform us on the big issues of our time and is little more than fake news. Dr Stephen Darling (Queen Margaret University) will explore the problem, focusing in particular on the contentious areas where science meets behaviour. Should we abandon science entirely, and to hell with the mismeasure of man?

Aug
10
Fri
2018
Stop Making Sense (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 10 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Do you always approach life logically, making careful decisions based on sound evidence and facts? Health warning! You may be suffering from abnormally high levels of rationality. This can be dangerous! Too much reason can clog up your brain and stifle your imagination.

Many lecturers at the University of Edinburgh are suffering from this dangerous condition. Worryingly, they’re passing it on to students.

Fortunately, poetry and laughter can go a long way to alleviate the symptoms. Act now before it’s too late. Join Dr Daphne Loads (The University of Edinburgh) for a healthy injection of irrationality.

We’re All Mental! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 10 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

The history of mental disorder is full of instances of labels of mental disorders being used to control what was deemed as unacceptable or dangerous. The science of mental health is as much determined by cultural norms as it is by its methods of enquiry. Psychologist Matthias Schwannauer (The University of Edinburgh) argues for the seductive appeal of neuroscience.  If we can physically locate our thoughts, anguish and distress, can we identify a fix? Could this be our key to happiness and contentment? If mental Illness is largely defined by not being typical, who wants to be?

Aug
11
Sat
2018
Fibre Optics Can Save the World! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 11 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

The magical internet-providing properties of fibre optics are well-known. But hardly anyone has heard of fibre optics that can diagnosis cancer or detect gravity waves, and Matthew Partridge (Southampton University) is not happy about that. These wonderful, cutting-edge devices can do amazing things and fix almost any problem. Don’t believe something so tiny can save the world? Come challenge Matthew with any problem and he’ll tell you how fibre optic sensors can fix it! “The show is educational, packed full of fascinating insight into the invention and uses of fibre optics” (Physics World).

Why is Mental Illness So Goddamn Controversial? (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 11 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

Psychiatrist Stephen Lawrie (The University of Edinburgh) thinks mental illness is needlessly controversial – and the controversy is destroying our mental health services. Artificial battle-lines are drawn between two stereotypes: ‘pill-peddling’ doctors under the influence of Big Bad Pharma versus caring, sharing talking therapists who get to ‘the root of the problem’. The resulting polarised, controversy-filled discussions sell newspapers, but they also allow authorities to get away with inadequate funding of services. Do you want things to improve for patients? Come along and be prepared to embrace a different perspective…

Aug
12
Sun
2018
School of Batman – Live! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 12 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Batman is the world’s greatest scientist and we can prove it.

School of Batman is a podcast where academics help Batman fight crime utilising their research.

In this show, it starts with a tour of some of the science of Batman on film, from the camp crusader of Adam West to the gritty realism of the Batfleck.

You’ll then get involved by providing scenarios to our hosts Chris George (Figshare) and fibre optic superhero Matthew Partridge (Southampton University).

 

Turn to the Darknet (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 12 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

The internet presents new opportunities for being both hidden and exposed.  Intelligence agencies and various governments fret about the advantages online anonymity gives miscreants and malcontents. Libertarians and civil liberties activists point to the technically and increasingly legally unlimited surveillance opportunities it provides. Is this a problem? Can we do anything about it?

Andreas Zaunseder (The University of Aberdeen, The University of Edinburgh) argues that ‘the darknet’ – currently home to geeks, thieves and drug dealers – actually gives us a potential way of taking back control.  Never mind the dark side – we need the dark net…

Aug
13
Mon
2018
Ditch the Classroom; Speak in Tongues! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 13 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Everybody believes that education is good: the more, the better. But what if the benefits of education are mainly due to knowing different languages? Does this mean we don’t need to study maths, biology or technology? Could our children have more hours in the day for play and do just as well in life? How many of us really need the specialist knowledge to prepare us for a possible medical career? Join Dr Thomas Bak (The University of Edinburgh) for this controversial take on educating future generations!

Fibre Optics Can Save the World! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 13 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

The magical internet-providing properties of fibre optics are well-known. But hardly anyone has heard of fibre optics that can diagnosis cancer or detect gravity waves, and Matthew Partridge (Southampton University) is not happy about that. These wonderful, cutting-edge devices can do amazing things and fix almost any problem. Don’t believe something so tiny can save the world? Come challenge Matthew with any problem and he’ll tell you how fibre optic sensors can fix it! “The show is educational, packed full of fascinating insight into the invention and uses of fibre optics” (Physics World).

Aug
14
Tue
2018
Disgust for Dummies (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 14 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

What do dirty floors and corrupted politicians have in common? They are both revolting. Disgust evolved to protect us from contamination and harm, being it physical or moral. But are these feelings an immovable reality or can we change them? Is our moral compass regulated by the same mechanisms that prevent us from drinking expired milk? And why is it important to know? This is a journey led by Dr Anna Sedda (Heriot-Watt University) into understanding and accepting disgust.

Cows Eat Grass, Don’t They? (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 14 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

The cows that made the milk that went into your tea or your cereal this morning might be housed all year round in large sheds. The dairy sector is changing from the image we all hold in our heads of cows in fields munching green grass. Are these changes likely to be controversial? Yes. Is this a bad thing? Dr Orla Shortall (James Hutton Institute) reckons it depends on why we value agriculture. Come along to make sense of how agriculture is changing, and how we can make better decisions about its future.

Aug
15
Wed
2018
All News is Fake News! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 15 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

We’re all brainwashed, biased and influenced by personal experience, even scientists. But there are ways to notice and counter this. Join scientists Professor David Finnegan (The University of Edinburgh) and Sarah Keer-Keer (Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology) to find out how evidence and emotion affect how we make decisions and how science can help us to think more clearly and pick our way through the fake news minefield.

Privacy is Dead, Long Live Privacy! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 15 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

Your pictures and regrettable digital utterings are public… Google, Facebook and Amazon know… well, everything… You’re tracked and logged across cyberspace and there’s nothing you can do! Or is there?

Join Nicola Osborne (EDINA, University of Edinburgh) for a thrillingly nerdy adventure through new data protection rights that might just save your digital footprint!

Bring your questions, panics or your top tips – or tweet them to #codi2018 – to be part of the show!

‘A wonderfully witty and engaging speaker’ **** (BroadwayBaby 2017).

‘Reveals a collection of hidden gems and curiosities’ **** (BroadwayBaby 2016).

Aug
16
Thu
2018
What Keeps You Sharp? (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 16 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Isn’t the expression ‘having a senior moment’ awful? Yet people often think of changes in their mental skills with age in terms of decline. While some people do experience these changes, others do not. So how do thinking skills change through midlife and beyond, and do our lifestyles affect those changes? Join Alan Gow (Heriot-Watt University) to explore results from “What Keeps You Sharp?”, a nationwide survey about attitudes towards the changes people expect in their thinking skills with age. See how your beliefs match the survey’s, and explore how all that matches current evidence.

Ditch the Classroom; Speak in Tongues! (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 16 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

Everybody believes that education is good: the more, the better. But what if the benefits of education are mainly due to knowing different languages? Does this mean we don’t need to study maths, biology or technology? Could our children have more hours in the day for play and do just as well in life? How many of us really need the specialist knowledge to prepare us for a possible medical career? Join Dr Thomas Bak (The University of Edinburgh) for this controversial take on educating future generations!

Aug
17
Fri
2018
Footballers Have Feelings Too (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 17 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

And we can learn from them.  Across the globe, many footballers and other athletes have actively engaged with issues related to peace, racism and social inequities.  These voices not only highlight important social and political topics, but also make the school curriculum feel more relevant to pupils – especially some working-class students who are not fully participating in their education.  Come hear from Dr Neil Speirs (The University of Edinburgh) about how sport for development is used in practice. Can football really bring about positive social and political change? Have your say!

Suspect Confessions (Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas 2018) @ New Town Theatre
Aug 17 @ 8:10 pm – 9:10 pm

 

Have you ever admitted to something you didn’t do? At home? At work? What would it take to own up to breaking the law? It’s surprisingly common for innocent people to confess to crimes they haven’t committed. For juries, confessions trump most other forms of evidence. Some people voluntarily confess things they are innocent of, yet vulnerable suspects can be lead to confess by some forms of police interviewing. From personality factors to lies, threats and torture, Dr Faye Skelton (Edinburgh Napier University) explores the psychology of false confessions and what we can do to prevent them.