The knowledge: How to rebuild our world from scratch

Wednesday, March 11, 2015 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm EDT (GMT -04:00)

A WICI Talk with Lewis Dartnell

Presented by the Waterloo Institute for Complexity and Innovation (WICI) in co-operation with THEMUSEUM and Words Worth Books.

A video of Dartnell’s WICI Talk can be found below or on our Vimeo page.

The Knowledge: How To Rebuild Our World From Scratch

Book called
Maybe it was an asteroid impact, a nuclear war, or a viral pandemic. Whatever the cause, the world as we know it has ended and you and the other survivors must start again. What key knowledge would you need to not only survive in the immediate post-apocalyptic aftermath, but avert another Dark Ages and accelerate the rebooting of civilisation from scratch? Living in the modern world, we have become disconnected from the basic processes that support our lives, as well as the beautiful fundamentals of science that enable you to relearn things for yourself.

In this WICI Talk, Lewis Dartnell shares work from The Knowledge: How To Rebuild Our World From Scratch, a grand thought experiment on the behind-the-scenes fundamentals of how our world works, and what drove the progression of civilisation over the centuries.

The Knowledge is a New York Times and Sunday Times bestseller, and was also awarded the Times ‘New Thinking’ Book of the Year. Dartnell, a UK Space Agency research fellow at the University of Leicester, will be signing copies of The Knowledge after his talk.

Praise for The Knowledge:

“A glorious compendium of the knowledge we have lost in the living; the origins of the material fabric of our actual lives. This is the most inspiring book I’ve read in a long time”
The Independent

“An extraordinary achievement. With lucidity and brevity, Dartnell explains the rudiments of a civilisation. It is a great read even if civilisation does not collapse. If it does, it will be the sacred text of the new world — and Dartnell that world’s first great prophet.”
The Times

The Knowledge is a fascinating look at the basic principles of the most important technologies undergirding modern society. It is a fun read full of optimism about human ingenuity”
The Wall Street Journal

The Knowledge is a stimulating read, a grand thought experiment on re-engineering every building block of civilisation”
The New York Post

“A terrifically engrossing history of science and technology”
The Guardian

“The ultimate do-it-yourself guide to ‘rebooting’ human civilisation”

Dr Lewis Dartnell
Presenter bio

Lewis Dartnell ( is a UK Space Agency research fellow at the University of Leicester. He also holds an STFC Science in Society Fellowship, and alongside his astrobiology research writes regular science articles in newspapers and magazines, and has appeared in TV shows such as BBC Horizon, Wonders of the Universe, and documentaries on National Geographic, Discovery and History channels. The Knowledge: How To Rebuild Our World From Scratch is his third book.

To learn more about The Knowledge, please visit The Knowledge website.

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