Issues ranging from climate change, to widening economic inequalities, to AI, challenge many tenets and orthodoxies in economics. A cogent argument exists for paradigmatic change in economic theory and practice, based on a combination of complex systems science, evolutionary science, and modern understandings of human well-being. Over the past decades these ideas have been increasingly well developed in academia, but thus far have failed to result in paradigmatic change. A way forward is to treat paradigmatic change as itself an exercise in multilevel cultural evolution. Leading evolutionary theorist Prof. David Sloan Wilson will summarise this strategy, based on a new series of articles, co-authored with the economist Prof. Dennis Snower, titled Rethinking the Theoretical Foundation of Economics. Prof. Sloan Wilson will argue that paradigmatic change is indeed possible, even if it has been elusive in the past.

A panel of leading thinkers on new economic paradigms, Prof. Sir Paul Collier (co-author of Greed is Dead), Prof. Rebecca Henderson (author of Reimagining Capitalism in a World on Fire), and Nick Hanauer (entrepreneur, civic activist, and co-author of The Gardens of Democracy), will discuss the issues raised in the talk, and Prof. Eric Beinhocker (author of The Origin of Wealth), will moderate a discussion and debate with the audience.

About the speaker and panellists:

David sloan wilson standing
David Sloan Wilson is an American evolutionary biologist and a Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Biological Sciences and Anthropology at Binghamton University. He is co-founder of the Evolution Institute, and co-founder of the recent spinoff nonprofit Prosocial World.
Beinhocker Eric 2019 200
Eric Beinhocker is a Professor of Public Policy Practice at the Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford. He is also the founder and Executive Director of the Institute for New Economic Thinking at the University’s Oxford Martin School.
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Sir Paul Collier is Professor of Economics and Public Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government and a Professorial Fellow of St Antony’s College. He is currently a Professeur invité at Sciences Po and a Director of the International Growth Centre.
Rebecca Henderson
Rebecca Henderson is one of 25 University Professors at Harvard, a research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research and a fellow of both the British Academy and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her research explores the degree to which the private sector can play a major role in building a more sustainable economy.
Nick Hanauer
Nick Hanauer is a successful business leader, entrepreneur, and venture capitalist. Hanauer has founded, co-founded, or invested in dozens of companies. In recent years, Hanauer has established himself as a civic innovator, public speaker, and fierce critic of America’s growing income inequality.


Research Themes