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Institute of Advanced Study

IAS Inaugurated into Durham University

(30 October 2006)

On 11th October 2006 Durham University celebrated the inauguration of its new Institute of Advanced Study.

The IAS is a multidisciplinary Institute that has been established with the aim of promoting dialogue at the frontiers of knowledge by gathering together scholars, intellectuals and public figures of world-class standing from across all disciplines, to address topics of major intellectual, scientific or public and policy interest.

The flagship Institute, established to mark the 175th anniversary of the foundation of Durham University, officially opened in October 2006 and will admit its founding fellows in January 2007.

The event took place at St John's College, Durham and saw Dr Bill Bryson, Durham University's Chancellor and IAS Advisory Council member, discussing 'The Enchantment of Ideas' with fellow IAS Advisory Council members Dr Matt Ridley (Science writer and founding Chairman of the International Centre for Life in Newcastle-upon-Tyne) and Mr Peter Watson (author and journalist). Their discussion explored how ideas come to matter to an inquiring public in the knowledge that careful work is required to make them appeal. Their discussion emphasised an important aspect of the Institute's work: not only to shape ideas but also to make them accessible to a wide audience.

A video of the event is now available to download: