In 2003, three eminent University of Alberta professors were contemplating ways to make the university more accessible to the Edmonton community. Since Edmonton is renowned as a Festival City and the university is all about ideas – voila! – an idea was born: The Festival of Ideas. The opportunity to create such a festival emerged during the planning for the U of A’s 2008 Centenary. The festival director worked with an advisory board of community and university members to create an engaging and exciting lineup that enjoyed great success in 2008.
The Festival of Ideas 2008 brought thousands of people—of all ages and walks of life—to Edmonton for sold-out readings, discussions, debates, films and performances on a unifying theme. It was this overwhelming enthusiasm and outright desire for shared intellectual discussion from within the community that prompted the U of A to proceed with Festival of Ideas 2010 so that, again, students from all school levels, faculty, educators, thinkers and members of the community at large can engage on a compelling theme.
The Festival of Ideas 2010 continued to engage the community with a provocative theme, “Truth and Lies: Trust Me.” The organizers achieved their goal of building a tradition of forging interconnections between science and the arts, and the University of Alberta and the broader community.
“The Faculty of Extension is very excited to be involved in the Festival of Ideas. The multidisciplinary and scope of the Festival reflects the University of Alberta's commitment to life-wide learning, and marks our Faculty's third year of community engagement downtown, in Enterprise Square. Our entire learning community - faculty, staff, instructors, learners, and partners - are encouraged to participate in this extraordinary event.”
-- Katy Campbell, FOI Advisory Board member --