Launching Uncharted 2015: Two extraordinary days in the heart of Berkeley

by Tracey Taylor


Berkeley, CA, August 6, 2015 — Austin has SXSW. Aspen has its Ideas Festival.

The Bay Area has Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas, an interactive, eye-opening two days of discussion, debate, workshops, and good food, beer and wine — Oct. 16 and Oct. 17, 9am-5pm, in downtown Berkeley’s historic Arts District.

Chris Anderson, Brad DeLong, and Masha Gessen are among the 2015 festival headliners. With two months to go, Uncharted is still busy solidifying an exhilarating line-up. For updates on participants, bookmark the Uncharted 2015 website.

Registration for Uncharted:The Berkeley Festival of Ideas 2015 opens today, see here.

The idea for Uncharted, like most of the celebrated ideas festivals that take place around the globe, evolved from a belief that the most intriguing ideas and also the solutions to our biggest challenges, emerge from the collision of ideas, visions, and perspectives,” said  Lance Knobel co-founder of Berkeleyside, the award-winning independent news website that produces Uncharted.  “At this festival of ideas, you meet today’s newsmakers but also the people who will be making news tomorrow, be it future Nobel laureates or pioneering food activists,” he said.

Highlights of the confirmed sessions in this third year of Uncharted include: the dark heart of Putin’s Russia, the economics of Star Trek, does Santa exist and other philosophical questions, criminal justice 2.0, what you don’t understand about gentrification, the death of high culture, and the intersection of scientific controversy and social activism.

Attendees will also hear from a teenager who trains teachers on how to modernize their classrooms and a marine biologist who delves into the neuroscience of our relationship to the ocean.

In addition to the intellectual clash of ideas, the two-day ideas festival includes pop-up performances by a diverse line-up of musicians, comedians, and artists; interactive labs on design thinking and iPhoneography; and an opening night party with live music, delicious food, craft beers and fine wines.

Nearly 30 sessions, many of them intimate, one-on-one conversations about the key topics and issues of our time, will feature some of today’s leading thinkers. The schedule is also designed to allow time for participants to mingle with speakers and with each other over coffee and treats.

Founded in 2013, as the Bay Area’s first ideas festival, Uncharted attracts a vast and diverse line-up of innovators and pioneers from across disciplines — technology, science, culture, politics, education, food, public policy, business, economics, the environment, activism, the arts, and other subjects that dominate modern life.

Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival Ideas 2015 kicks off on Friday, Oct. 16 at the Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse on Addison Street and sessions, labs and coffee breaks are also held  across the road at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre.

Registration includes full-access to the two days of events and the festival’s Opening Night Party, which will be held at Alumni House on the UC Berkeley campus and feature live music, fresh food prepared on giant grills on the campus’ leafy outdoor patio, and wine and beers.

The festival is easily accessible by public transit, both venues are steps from Downtown Berkeley BART and many AC Transit routes.

To register online visit here. Early Bird discounts are available for a limited time, including a “2 tickets for the price of 1” offer that works out at just $86 a day. 

Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas is proud to be supported by the following partners: Cloudera; Wareham Development; Autodesk; DeYoe Wealth Management; Jetton Construction; North Berkeley Investment Partners; The Grubb Company; Panoramic Interests; TMG Partners; 2000 Center Street LLC; The City of Berkeley; Downtown Berkeley Association; UC Berkeley; WeWork; Whole Foods; Diablo Magazine and KQED

About Berkeleyside, organizers of Uncharted:

Berkeleyside is Berkeley, California’s independently owned local news site. Launched in 2009, Berkeleyside was founded by three veteran journalists: Lance Knobel, Tracey Taylor and Frances Dinkelspiel. Berkeleyside is a local newspaper without the paper. A pioneer in the field of online local journalism, Berkeleyside was the winner of the Society of Professional Journalists’ Northern California Excellence in Journalism Award for Community Journalism in both 2013 and 2014.  More at

Contact: Helena Brantley, Red Pencil Publicity + Marketing

Tel 510.350.7822 or

Download a PDF version of the release here.