Do you have an idea worth spreading?
Speaking at TEDxSanAntonio
Subscribe to our email updates to be notified of upcoming speaker opportunities.
TEDxSanAntonio is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2020 with multiple events throughout the year. Speaker nominations will be accepted beginning Sunday, March 15, 2020. The deadline to submit is Sunday, May 17, 2020.
The theme of TEDxSanAntonio 2020 is THE POWER OF TEN. Our theme is open to multiple interpretations, and you’re welcome to provide your own, but here are three that resonated the most with us.
- Building, fostering and conserving community with intention, supporting individuality, and welcoming collaboration and participation
- Growth in size, scope, and time
- Exponential impact in kindness, knowledge, and/or building awareness
TEDxSanAntonio is a community of thinkers, explorers, makers, doers, performers, and artists who believe passionately in the power of ideas as a catalyst for positive change in San Antonio and around the world. In the spirit of TED’s mission, we aim to gather people from every discipline and culture who seek a deeper understanding of the world.
Our goal is to produce events that feature stimulating performances, discussions, entertainment, and art that spark new ideas and foster real dialogue on issues that matter to our community.
About Our Speakers
At TEDxSanAntonio, we search year-round for speakers who will inform and inspire, surprise and delight. We also seek out emerging artists, scientists and thinkers, introducing them to the TEDxSanAntonio community well before they hit the mainstream.
Suggest a Speaker
If you know someone who belongs on our stage, please use our speaker nomination form, and tell us why this person would be well-matched to the TEDxSanAntonio stage.
Speaking at TEDxSanAntonio
TEDxSanAntonio speakers are chosen through a highly curated process by a select team that takes into consideration ideas, speaker styles, and the flow of the day. We measure applications by the power of the idea and whether the TEDxSanAntonio platform can help propel the idea forward.
What ideas are we looking for?
- Something that’s new and surprising—an idea or invention that our audience has never heard about.
- Ideas that need to be defended—not something self-evident, but an interesting argument, perhaps with an antagonist.
- A great basic idea (that our audience has maybe already heard) with a compelling new argument behind it that challenges beliefs and perspectives (e.g., a scientific discovery that changes how we think about frogs, a philosophical argument that reshapes our notions of friendship, etc.).
In other words, an idea isn’t just a story or a list of facts. A good idea takes certain evidence or observations and draws a larger conclusion.
We also seek artistic and musical performances as an integral part of our events. Previous performers have included: spoken word poets, singers and musicians, modern dancers, and comedians.
We are currently seeking ideas across subjects in, but not limited to:
- Clean energy
- Built environment
- Food systems
- Mental health
- Healthcare technologies
- Cultural preservation
- Criminal justice
- Public policy
- Expanding access
- Spoken word
Things to Know
Much like TED, TEDxSanAntonio isn’t a typical conference. The TEDxSanAntonio audience has high expectations of the speakers. Presenting speakers need to have credibility in the space and be actively working on the idea. We feature speakers from the city of San Antonio and around the world who want to spread their unique ideas through TEDxSanAntonio.
Speaker nominations will be accepted beginning Sunday, March 15th, 2020. The speaker application deadline is May 17th, 2020.
Notifications regarding application submissions will be made during the week of July 4th, 2020, unless otherwise noted. Though we consider each application carefully, please note that fewer than 20 percent of applicants are selected for any given event.
- For official TEDx speaker guidelines, please see here.
- For more on the types of talks that make a TEDx Talk, please see here.
- For more on TED, please see TED.com
These 10 tips will help you plan and deliver a great TEDTalk.
- Dream big. Strive to create the best talk you have ever given. Reveal something never seen before. Do something the audience will remember forever. Share an idea that could change the world.
- Show us the real you. Share your passions, your dreams … and also your fears. Be vulnerable. Speak of failure as well as success.
- Make the complex plain. Don’t try to dazzle intellectually. Don’t speak in abstractions. Explain! Give examples. Tell stories. Be specific.
- Connect with people’s emotions. Make us laugh! Make us cry!
- Don’t flaunt your ego. Don’t boast. It’s the surest way to switch everyone off.
- No selling from the stage! Unless we have specifically asked you to, do not talk about your company or organization. And don’t even think about pitching your products or services or asking for funding.
- Feel free to comment on other speakers — to praise or to criticize. Controversy energizes! Enthusiastic endorsement is powerful too.
- If possible, don’t read your talk. Notes are fine. But if the choice is between reading or rambling, then read.
- You must end your talk on time. Doing otherwise is to steal time from the people that follow you, and could disqualify your talk from appearing on TEDxTalks YouTube channel. We won’t allow it.
- Rehearse your talk in front of a trusted friend … for timing, for clarity, for impact.
Want to know more about what it means to be a TEDxSanAntonio speaker and why you should consider giving a talk?
Be sure to read the TEDx Speaker Guide document from the “big” TED organization about speaking at a TEDx event.
How do I suggest a speaker?
Use our speaker nomination form and fill in as much information as you can. This form goes directly to our speaker selection team.
Can I suggest someone I don’t know personally? You ask for their email address, and I don’t know it.
Please do! Just let us know how you’ve heard about this person, and why you think they should speak at TED.
Can I suggest someone I work for, or a client of mine?
You are welcome to nominate someone you work for or a client. However, they will be required to submit a 200-word summary of their “big idea” as well as a 90s video pitch.
Can I nominate myself as a speaker?
Will it help if I submit multiple nominations, or have my friends nominate me several times?
No. It really only takes one suggestion. However, the selection committee may reach out with feedback and request that you resubmit.
Is there a deadline for suggesting a speaker?
Yes. The deadline to submit a nomination is Sunday, May 3, 2020. It’s best to get your suggestions to us as early as possible, so we can research them carefully and make the best decision on the speaker roster.
I want to speak at TEDxSanAntonio, but my usual talk runs 50 minutes. Can I get a longer slot?
TEDx Talks are a showcase for speakers presenting well-formed ideas in under 18
Minutes. The time limit is part of what makes TEDx Talks work. And remember: Shorter talks are not lesser talks. It may only take 5 minutes to make your point unforgettably.
We strictly enforce the clock for all speakers. Talk lengths are assigned to those selected upon acceptance. TEDxSanAntonio is the place to condense your ideas into a short, compelling talk that communicates your best ideas.
Do you have keynotes or panels?
At TEDxSanAntonio, everyone hears every presentation. There are no breakout sessions or tracks, no keynotes, and very rarely are there panels (though we have had debates).
What do you pay speakers?
As per TED rules, TEDxSanAntonio does not pay speakers. We do, of course, cover travel costs and provide excellent hotel accommodation—as well as a covetable pass to the event for the speaker and one guest. Speakers are required to attend the full day of rehearsal, speaker reception, entire speaking event and after-party, soaking up the talks and connecting with other attendees. Other benefits include pre-conference coaching and training and attendance to special events for networking. We are committed to creating an experience that’s tremendously fulfilling and beneficial on all sides.
An additional benefit of speaking at TEDxSanAntonio is that your presentation may become a TED Talk, part of our beautifully produced, broadcast-quality video series. Not all talks given on the TEDxSanAntonio stage will automatically become online TED Talks, but we hope most do.