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Speaker(s): Professor Kevin Fenton, Vivienne Parry, Dr Richard Smith, Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, Professor Tony Young
Chair: Fi Glover

Recorded on 9 March 2017 at Old Theatre, Old Building

In this new series of debates entitled Glass Half Full, being recorded for broadcast on BBC Radio 4, Fi Glover pits optimists against pessimists in a new topical debating format. A lead speaker on each side presents their argument, and both question expert witnesses to support their point of view. At the end of the debate, the audience votes and declares in favour of an optimistic or pessimistic view of the subject – Glass Half Empty – or Full!

In this first debate panellists will discuss if we heading towards disaster or will a better lifestyle and technological innovation save the day?

Two other debates will take place at LSE. On 15 March the topic is A Global Population of 9 Billion is Sustainable, while the third debate on 28 March will discuss Digital Technology is Making Children's Lives Richer.

Kevin Fenton (@ProfKevinFenton) is the Public Health England National Director for Health and Wellbeing. He oversees PHE's national prevention programmes including screening for cancer and other conditions, Health Checks, national health marketing campaigns, public mental health, and a range of wellbeing programmes for all ages.

As well hosting medical programmes for BBC Radio 4 and writing widely on health, Vivienne Parry (@vivienneparry) is also Head of Engagement at Genomics England, which is delivering the 100,000 Genomes Project (the project will sequence 100,000 genomes from 70,000 people, aiming to create a new genomic medicine service for the NHS).

Richard Smith (@Richard56) is the Chair of icddr,b (formerly International Centre for Diarroheal Disease, Bangladesh) and of Patients Know Best, a company that puts patients in contrl of their records. He was formerly been Editor of the British Medical Journal and the BBC Breakfast Time doctor.

Helen Stokes-Lampard (@HelenStokesLam) is Chair of Council for the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP). She is a part time GP partner in Lichfield and until September 2016 was Head of Primary Care Teaching (undergraduate) at Birmingham University’s School of Medicine.

Tony Young (@DrTonyYoung) is National Clinical Lead for Innovation at NHS England. He is also a practicing frontline surgeon, Director of Medical Innovation at Anglia Ruskin University. He co-founded the £500m Anglia Ruskin MedTech campus which is set to become one of the world’s largest health innovation spaces.

Fi Glover is a multi-award winning broadcaster. She is one of the country’s best-known radio voices, having worked on BBC Radio 4, 5 Live, Radio 2, Radio 1 and GLR. She currently presents BBC Radio 4’s The Listening Project.

This event will be broadcast at 8pm on Wednesday 5 April 2017 on BBC Radio 4.

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