The Night Of Ideas 2021, 24 Hours To Feel "Close(r) "


The sixth edition of the Night of Ideas, coordinated by the Institut Français, will be held on Thursday, January 28th, 2021 on the topic “Close(r) ”. It will be reinforced in its digital dimension with the creation of “24 hours of night and ideas”.

On January 28th 2021, more than 200 Nights of Ideas are expected internationally, from Finland to South Africa and from Fiji to Peru, with increased resonance between countries and geographical areas. In Sydney as well as in Mexico City, Seoul, Beirut, Lomé or Toronto, it is essentially local voices that will come to explore the “Close(r) ” thematic.

The 2021 edition will take on special significance in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. The theme “Close(r) ” has been chosen to question the transformation of our relationship to space and mobility, the new forms of solidarity that the crisis in our economic and social models calls for, and the place of digital technology in our societies, which is increasingly shaping our relationship with the world. “Close(r) ” also invites us to question the evolution of contemporary sociality and, more than ever, our relationship to each other.

Live from across the world

While the health crisis is limiting gatherings and people’s mobility, the Institut français offers everyone the opportunity to live an unprecedented experience, 24 hours of Night and Ideas, on Facebook, YouTube, and on

Thanks to the richness and diversity of the French cultural network in the world,
this event will cross time zones from Oceania to the West Coast of the United States, promote the free circulation of ideas and knowledge and bring local experience to life in a great global live event.

Thus, for 24 hours, the upcoming Night of Ideas will be an opportunity to feel “closer” than ever, to strengthen global connections, to interact with other audiences and to celebrate a thinking without borders.

Watch Jean-Yves Le Drian’s intervention

Download the press kit

Since 2016, year of its founding at the initiative of the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs and the Institut Français, every last Thursday of the month of January, philosophers, writers, researchers, intellectuals, students, whistleblowers, artists, politicians and more, are invited to gather in France and the world around a common topic. Every year the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs requests its diplomatic and cultural network to support this initiative.