For the sixth year in a row, IE University has been one of the sponsors of the Hay Festival Segovia, the so-called “Woodstock of the mind”. This year IE University has decided to go a step forward by assuming a leading role in the festival’s organization. To this aim, IE University has hosted nine events, seven of them taking place on Saturday, September 27th. The morning was dedicated to debating on Humanities, Education and Academia. The afternoon had a rather artistic approach, including the participation of two Literature Nobel Prize Laureates, one of the best cooks in the world and one of the best Spanish writers.
The opening event was “New Prospects for Europe, the West and the Global Village”. The event was led by IE’s Dean of Humanities Arantza de Areilza, who moderated a conversation with two important historians, Notre Dame’s History Professor Felipe Fernández-Armesto and IE Humanities Professor Manuel Lucena. The discussion revolved around the topics of Globalization and Multiculturalism. Professor Fernández-Armesto shared the main key points of his successful course on Global History, chosen by 300,000 students in the US, and the findings of his research.
The second event was entitled “Global Issues cannot be resolved without the Humanites”. The panel was composed by Michael Steinberg (Director of the Cogut Center for the Humanities at Brown University), Paul Smith (Director of British Council USA) and David Guttenplan (Politics and Culture Journalist at The New York Times), who acted as moderator. During this entertaining conversation the panel discussed the relation between Power and the Humanities, the importance of culture in a globalized world, and the relevance of adding knowledge to skills. The dialogue also touched on the employability of graduates in the Humanities. Director Steinberg said “Recent graduates in Science get better salaries but in the long term Humanities graduates get a more robust career path”.
“Europe, Education and Innovation” was the morning’s closing event and had two heavy weighs of Education, Lord Patten of Barnes (Chancellor of Oxford University) and Santiago Iñiguez (President of IE University and Dean of IE Business School). This enlightening debate focused on the drift of European Higher Education, both participants agreeing on the importance of the Bolonia Agreement and the relevance that must be given to Humanities. The Oxford Chancellor praised IE University stating “IE is a great Business School, is the equivalent to Real or Barça in education. I am glad they opened a University and specially the importance they give to Humanities”.
During the lunch break a charity luncheon was held at IE University’s Chapter Hall. The main attractions were the key note speeches given by Hay Festival’s Founder Peter Florence and by Lord Patten of Barnes. The selected attendees had the chance to share their thoughts with the morning lecturers.
Three different events took place in the afternoon and evening: a talk by the famous cook and Harvard University visiting professor Ferran Adrià about creativity, a public conversation between Literature Nobel Prize Laureates Jean Marie Le Clézio and Mario Vargas Llosa where they shared the reasons that had led them to join the uncertain profession of writers, and, finally, a presentation by the renowned Spanish author, and perhaps future winner of the Literature Nobel Prize, Javier Marías, who presented his last book “Así empieza lo malo”, released only 5 days before.
IE University can be proud of its participation in the Hay Festival Segovia 2014. Having been able to hold all events as planned and witnessing a high attendance of public in all of them was undoubtedly the best reward to the efforts made by IE’s personnel in organizing this successful event.