The Conference on World Affairs (CWA) was founded in 1948 as a forum for international issues. Since then, its subject matter has expanded to encompass the arts, diplomacy, technology, the environment, spirituality, business, medicine, human rights – you name it. Every April, 100 participants representing a wide range of backgrounds gather at CU for a week of discussion and debate on roughly 200 panels, plenaries and performances. There’s nothing quite like it.

This year’s CWA will be held from April 9 through 13.  Roger Ebert, who has participated in the CWA for four decades, refers to the CWA as “the Conference on Everything Conceivable.” This year’s theme is therefore Everything Conceivable – an abstract umbrella that covers an abundance of ideas. Retired U.S. Ambassador Douglas McElhaney, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution Alice Rivlin, National Public Radio correspondent Margot Adler, director of communications for House Republicans Alvin Felzenberg and entertainer Lillian Boutté are among the participants. Presentation topics include the human brain, vampires, terrorism, poetry, genetics, defining faith, sports, drugs and life in the far future.

As always, all events are free and open to the public. Parking and bus rides are also free. Look for a complete schedule of CWA events inside this Sunday’s Camera, next Monday’s Colorado Daily or online at