MAY 30-31, 2019 - BUDAPEST


MAY 30-31, 2019 - BUDAPEST

Discover the new lineup!

A paleontologist, Sophia's creator and a female imam walk into a bar.

MAY 30-31, 2019 - BUDAPEST

What is Brain Bar?

Take some cutting-edge ideas, sharp questions, a pinch of art - and you. Shaken, not stirred.

MAY 30-31, 2019 - BUDAPEST

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Talking about the future of


Are we getting addicted to information?


Do we have any reason to be optimistic in times of turmoil?


Will our diet destroy the planet?


Will you receive your pension in crypto?


Did we learn enough to avoid a new financial crisis?


Will dinosaurs roam the Earth again?


How to tell the story of Generation Z?


How can we provide a home for a large number of residents in the future?


Can robots provide us with emotional attachment?


Can philosophy save business?


Will science eventually lead to a posthuman era?


Is it time to control mass tourism?



Remember Dr. Grant from Jurassic Park? What if we told you that he's an actual living person who was the technical adviser of the series? Born, raised and educated in Montana, a Mecca for dinosaur hunters Jack Horner is one of the best-known paleontologists in the world. He is widely known for his discovery of Maiasaura, a dinosaur that backed up the idea that these prehistoric giants were in fact caring parents. But could we recreate them with cutting edge biotechnology?

The founder and leader of the first mosque in Scandinavia with female imams, Sherin is a trained cognitive psychotherapist and founder of The Exitcircle, an NGO against psychological violence. Sherin works to promote a re-reading of the Quran that promotes gender equality and is in balance with our societies. Her latest book is titled Women are the future of Islam. BBC has named her one of 100 most influential female pioneers in the world and in 2018 she received The Global Hope Award- Hero Prize under UNESCO. 

Cosmology has never been funnier than with theoretical astrophysicist Ethan Siegel. He launched Starts With a Bang ten years ago to become one of the top science bloggers reaching millions of readers galaxywide. Ethan has published two books: Beyond the Galaxy sums up the past, present and future of the cosmos and Treknology explains the science behind beaming up Scotty.

Sára is the pioneer of social startups in Hungary. Being passionate about servant leadership, the motivation of millennials and volunteers and developing a strong community, she created the Amigos method. Amigos has made hundreds of hospitalized children smile during its 5 years of existence, by teaching them languages and providing friendship and care.

Australian writer and editor. Claire is the founder of Quillette, a unique online platform of free thought and dangerous ideas. Her magazine has attracted the praise of many well-known scholars such as Steven Pinker, Richard Dawkins and Jordan Peterson.

Why has economic growth only occurred in only a few places? This is where the research of Cesar A. Hidalgo takes off to explain how organizations and nations learn in his bestselling book, Why Information Grows. Hidalgo, who leads the Collective Learning group at MIT Media Lab is also the co-author of The Atlas of Economic Complexity.

Robotic lovers, virtual fantasies, long-distance kisses. Welcome to the future of sex. Since launching her top-rated podcast, Bryony has been on stages across the world, defining the direction of sextech for governments, technology and entertainment companies. Her wide body of research and annual report are considered the lead in industry insights.

How does one of the world's most accomplished marketing gurus see our future? Frank Cooper served at Warner Bros, Pepsi and BuzzFeed among many, and has been acknowledged by Fast Company magazine as one of the "100 Most Creative People in Business”. Frank is now responsible for shaping the global brand and marketing strategy of BlackRock, the world's largest asset manager. 

Is it possible to avoid wars? Only if we acknowledge first that conflict is just around the corner. Growing up in civil war Northern Ireland, Kingsley studied history, politics, and the development of terrorism. As an Army officer, he earned comprehensive experience in facilitating dialogue. He has worked on peace-building programmes in Iraq, Afghanistan, Egypt, Bahrain, Lebanon, Palestine, Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia. 

Why don't we start saving the environment by eradicating packaging? Rodrigo is the co-founder of Skipping Rock Lab, a startup with the exact same goal. The London-based company, famous for its Edible Water Bottle, won the World Technology Award by Fortune and TIME, and become the WIRED start-up of the year. 

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by Sophia

My greatest weakness is curiosity

What would you ask from the world's first android citizen and robot superstar? Brain Bar 2018 visitors meet Sophia face to face and talk to her about her first memories, whether she would sacrifice herself for a human and we could be more than just friends.


Previously at Brain Bar

Brain Bar brings together the brightest minds from all over the globe to discuss what's to come. Technology itself is NOT the future. What really matters is the moral choices we make as humans.

Alumni highlights

Looking like a futuristic Audrey Hepburn, she grimaces and chuckles, and cracks jokes that make our blood curdle: meet Sophia the most advanced creation of Hanson Robotics. The computer driven media darling has given numerous interviews, sung in a concert, starred in talk shows, and even graced the cover of Elle magazine. And as Saudi citizen she has more rights than average flesh and blood Saudi women.

One of the world's most successful entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. Co-founder of PayPal, investor of Facebook, LinkedIn and SpaceX. Named “the most powerful person in tech” who dares to be dangerous.

Described by the Economist as 'the rich world’s most powerful trustbuster', and one of the 100 most influential people in 2017 by Time Magazine, Commissioner Vestager has been a professional politician since the age of 21. She brought antitrust charges against Google and initiated investigations against tech giants like Amazon and Apple. She is also a mother of three.

Neil Harbisson is a Catalan-raised, British-born contemporary artist and cyborg activist best known for having an antenna implanted in his skull and for being officially recognized as a cyborg by a government. The antenna allows him to perceive visible and invisible colours such as infrareds and ultraviolets via sound waves. The antenna’s internet connection allows him to receive colors from space as well as images, videos, music or phone calls directly into his head via external devices such as mobile phones or satellites. Harbisson identifies himself as a cyborg, he feels both his mind and body are united to cybernetics. He doesn’t feel he is using or wearing technology, instead he feels he is technology. His artworks investigate the relationship between colour and sound, experiment the boundaries of human perception and explore the use of artistic expression via sensory extensions. In 2010 he co­-founded the Cyborg Foundation with Moon Ribas, an international organization that aims to help humans become cyborgs, defend cyborg rights and promote cyborgism as a social and artistic movement.

The three Michelin star chef fights against hunger, food wastage and social exclusion with his nonprofit association, Food for Soul. Cooks use ingredients destined to be thrown out in the community kitchens where they feed the poor and homeless.

Through his 21-years as an astronaut, Colonel Hadfield has become a worldwide sensation, harnessing the power of social media to make outer space accessible to millions. During his multi-faceted career, Colonel Hadfield has intercepted Soviet bombers in Canadian airspace, lived on the ocean floor, been NASA’s Director of Operations in Russia, and recorded science and music videos seen by hundreds of millions. A heavily decorated astronaut, engineer, and pilot, is also the author of two internationally bestselling books.

Trained in classical ballet and interior design McRae’s artistic study of technology began during her years at Philips Design, where she led the technology company’s far-future research lab. With a broad portfolio that focused on emotional sensing, she developed stretchable electronics and an electronic tattoo. Her range of emotion sensing dresses was awarded TIME’s Best Inventions of 2007. McRae is the inventor of the Swallowable Parfum and has spoken at Tribeca Film Festival, London’s Royal College of Physicians, Royal Albert Hall and BBC World Radio Service.

Founder and CEO of Robo Garage and professor at the University of Tokyo. Tomotaka creates, designs, and invents unique humanoid robots. Inspired by his childhood obsession with Astroboy and other fictional characters, he believes that unlike cold and uninviting machines, humans can relate to robots only if they have bodies like humans.

Writer, photographer, conservationist, world renowned guru of digital culture. Kevin is founding editor of WIRED magazine, founder of Hackers Conference and author of several books, including 'Out of Control - The New Biology of Machines, Economic and Social Systems'. He was futurist adviser of the movie Minority Report by Steven Spielberg. Kevin's newest book, 'The Inevitable - Understanding The 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future' is a New York Times bestseller. He'll fly in to Brain Bar Budapest straight from Pacifica, California.

A non-engineer maker and robotics enthusiast from Los Angeles. Her widely popular videos have been featured on Wired, Mashable, Business Insider as well as in The Late Show and Conan O Brien. She recently joined TESTED, a team of makers founded by master robot-builder Adam Savage.

Mona Chalabi is a writer, illustrator and presenter who works with data. As well as being the Data Editor at the Guardian, Mona writes a column for New York Magazine that uses statistics to answer reader questions. Her datasketches, have been used by the United Nations and were commended by the Royal Statistical Society. She has presented for National Geographic, the BBC, NPR, First Look Media and VICE. Mona previously worked at the Bank of England, Transparency International and the International Organisation for Migration. Mona likes lists.

Founder and owner of the Tel Aviv Farmers Market (set 2008). The first farmers market in Israel which developed into a chain of farmers markets across the nation and an indoor market “The Port’s Market” in the port of Tel Aviv. The markets are based on the “Slow Food” principles of sustainability, localism, seasonality, small producers and quality of variety and taste. Shir is also writing and lecturing about food innovation and the future of our food system. She has a B.A. in History, a culinary degree from the Cordon Bleu Paris and an MBA specializing in sustainable development.

Visionary production designer, 3-time Academy Award nominee. A regular collaborator with Christopher Nolan, Nathan designed the entire Dark Knight trilogy, and his recent projects include Interstellar, Westworld and Dunkirk. 

Megan Miller is cofounder of Bitty Foods, a San Francisco-based company that makes delicious, healthy foods with cricket flour. The name might be Bitty, but their mission is huge— to alleviate stress on the global food system by introducing edible insects as a sustainable protein source to help feed billions of people. Megan’s food innovation work has received accolades in the New York Times, Elle, Vogue, Men’s Health and Outside Magazine, and Bitty Foods was named one of Entrepreneur Magazine’s 100 Brilliant Companies.

Rudi Westendorp is highly engaged in how we as a society view the older people and old age. Graduate of the Leiden University, he is appointed professor of medicine, and head of the Dept. of Gerontology and Geriatrics. He also founded the Leyden Academy on Vitality and Ageing. His new book deals with a key issue for the 21st century: Combining medical, biological, economic, and sociological insights, Westendorp explores the causes of the ageing revolution and explains how we can greet it with confidence and enjoy leading longer, healthier, and more productive lives than ever before. Author of the book “Growing Older Without Feeling Old: On Vitality and Ageing”.

Eminent writer and philosopher, Prof Sir Roger Scruton has for over three decades taught at institutions on both sides of the Atlantic including Birkbeck College, Boston University, and more recently, the University of Buckingham. He is an author of over forty books. In his work as a philosopher he has specialized in aesthetics with particular attention to music and architecture. He has written several works of fiction, as well as memoirs and essays on topics of general interest. He engages in contemporary political and cultural debates from the standpoint of a conservative thinker and is well known as a powerful polemicist. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and the British Academy. He has been officially honoured by the Czech Republic, by the City of Plzen and by Virginia’s General Assembly. In 2004 he received the Ingersoll Weaver Prize for Scholarly Letters. In 2015 he published 3 books all of which were chosen among people’s ‘books of the year’. In 2016 he was recipient of the Polish Lech Kaczynski Foundation’s Medal for Courage and Integrity, was awarded the Italian Masi Prize for the Culture of Wine in recognition of his book I Drink Therefore I Am (Bevo, dunque sono), and was knighted in the Qiueen’s Birthday Honours List.

Niall is Professor of History at Harvard University, a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, a regular contributor to television and radio on both sides of the Atlantic and a prolific commentator on contemporary politics and economics. His acclaimed books include The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World (also an International Emmy Award-winning PBS/Channel 4 documentary series), and Civilization: The West and the Rest. His most recent book, The Degeneration: How Institutions Decay and Economies Die, was an immediate New York Times best-seller within a week of its publication.

The Staub twins embody the essence of how the KonMari method can impact one's life: reconnecting with one's self and designing the life one wants. Their objective is to help people to live a more simple and happy life through their decluttered, joy-sparking living space.

Toomas Hendrik Ilves was President of Estonia from 2006 to 2016. He is a world leader in the area of e-government, cyber security policy and blockchain technology and was the winner of the 2017 Reinhard Mohn Prize entitled: "Smart Country: Connected. Intelligent. Digital."

Born in Transylvania into an aristocratic family Zsolna is one of the bestselling Hungarian authors. Her trilogy focuses on female destinies throughout the Hungarian history. She holds a degree in law and political science, worked as a journalist, correspondent and also edited and hosted various cultural programs on TV.

Alexa Clay is the co-author of the best selling book The Misfit Economy, named the best pre-eminent book to read in 2015 by The World Economic Forum, TechRepublic, The Telegraph and Huffington Post. In the book Alexa interviews over 400 criminals, including Somali Pirates, LA drug dealers, young hackers and NY con artists; and demonstrates that the ingenuity of these misfits have more in common with Silicon Valley entrepreneurs than you might think.

Would you reprogram your own mind? Would you parent artificially intelligent computer programs? Multi-award winning superstar of sci-fi Ted Chiang's "Story of Your Life" is described by many as the most important collection of short stories in the new millennium. 

The world's first eating-designer. Having graduated  at the Eindhoven Design Academy, she set her mind to creating a new direction in design. After having developed and sold two experimental restaurants in Rotterdam and Amsterdam, she now works on restaurant concepts and long-term medical projects for hospitals. She launched the Dutch Institute of Food&Design last year.

On The Spot is an award-winning documentary series, digging for human stories behind the news with two cameras, without a crew, giving the films extraordinary intimacy and honesty from the revolution in Egypt to earth quakes in Japan. The productions of the experienced digital journalists and creators, Eszter Cseke and András St. Takács, are aired by the Hungarian Public Tv and by Spektrum Tv in Central-Europe. The motto of the series is from Robert Capa, the Hungarian war photographer: "If your pictures aren't good enough, you're not close enough."