• Events
May 15
Live Ideas 2021: Qudus Onikeku, QDance Co. Online Panel, Screening & Conversation
May 15
Live Ideas 2021: Qudus Onikeku, QDance Co. Online Panel, Screening & Conversation

Night of Ideas - San Francisco

Activate your imagination with the Bay Area's third annual Night of Ideas!

As part of the global Night of Ideas festivities coordinated by the Institut Français, Paris, Night of Ideas - San Francisco will take place 7 to 9 p.m. PST on January 28, 2021 and features keynotes, conversations, and performances around this year's theme, "closing the distance." 

Gathering Bay Area thinkers, community leaders, artists, and visionaries, this year's edition of the festive all-night library takeover will stream to your home. But even as we remain safely apart, how do we close the distance?

After a year that has created or exacerbated so many kinds of distance -- physical and metaphorical -- among us, we've invited these voices to share ideas and creative visions that can bring us closer together. How do we close the distances we face between each other? How do we close the distance toward a more just and vibrant Bay Area?

Hosted by KQED's Mina Kim, the evening will feature a special conversation with San Francisco Mayor London N. Breed about what these global cities can learn from each other, despite the geographic and cultural distance between them, and how they plan to lead their communities through the recovery ahead.

Join us an explore a program representing a breadth of the wider Bay Area's diverse thought and expression, including:


Spoken Word and Multimedia

Original Performances

For more information and full list of speakers, panelists, and performers, visit nightofideassf.com.

Register to receive reminders and a sign-up link to this free virtual event. 

Craving more Night of Ideas content? Tune in for the global Night of Ideas 2021, a 24-hour virtual marathon event featuring philosophical debate and artistic performances produced in 75 countries around the world. Explore United States program and speakers at nigthofideas.org. 


Viewers of the 2021 Night of Ideas have the opportunity to win several prizes during the program. Participants may simply register in advance via Eventbrite, and winners will be randomly selected and announced during the event.

Prizes include:

  • A staycation weekend at Villa San Francisco. Recently featured in Elle Decor, Villa San Francisco aims at creating a future-driven dialogue between artists and communities.
  • A membership at the Museum of Modern Art SF Moma membership card
  • A KQED membership, including access to KQED Passport.
  • San Francisco Library tote bag with a copy of the 2021 One City One Book selection Know My Name, A Memoir by Chanel Miller.

ACCESSIBILITY NOTE: Captions and American Sign Language interpreters from Bay Area Communication Access will be available during the livestream event.

Night of Ideas is co-presented by California HumanitiesKQEDSan Francisco Museum of Modern ArtSan Francisco Public Library, and Villa San Francisco.

The event is made possible by the support of the City and County of San Francisco, the Friends of the San Francisco Public Library, Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United StatesFrench American Cultural Society, as well as AbbVie through its ongoing support of KQED. La Nuit des Idées is a project of the Institut Français.

More info.