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Freakonomics Radio podcast

Freakonomics Radio

Discover the hidden side of everything with Stephen J. Dubner, co-author of the Freakonomics books. Each week, Freakonomics Radio tells you things you always thought you knew (but didn’t) and things you never thought you wanted to know (but do) — from the economics of sleep to how to become great at just about anything. Dubner speaks with Nobel laureates and provocateurs, intellectuals and entrepreneurs, and various other underachievers.

Discover the hidden side of everything with Stephen J. Dubner, co-author of the Freakonomics books. Each week, Freakonomics Radio tells you things you always thought you knew (but didn’t) and things you never thought you wanted to know (but do) — from the economics of sleep to how to become great at just about anything. Dubner speaks with Nobel laureates and provocateurs, intellectuals and entrepreneurs, and various other underachievers.

 

#665

523. Did Michael Lewis Just Get Lucky with “Moneyball”?

No — but he does have a knack for stumbling into the perfect moment, including the recent FTX debacle. In this installment of the Freakonomics Radio Book Club, we revisit the book that launched the analytics revolution. ... Read more

24 Nov 2022

54 MINS

54:14

24 Nov 2022


#664

522. Is Google Getting Worse?

It used to feel like magic. Now it can feel like a set of cheap tricks. Is the problem with Google — or with us? ... Read more

17 Nov 2022

54 MINS

54:12

17 Nov 2022


#663

The Most Interesting Fruit in the World (Ep. 375 Update)

The banana, once a luxury good, rose to become America’s favorite fruit. Now a deadly fungus threatens to wipe it out. Can it be saved? ... Read more

10 Nov 2022

39 MINS

39:04

10 Nov 2022


#662

521. I’m Your Biggest Fan!

It’s fun to obsess over pop stars and racecar drivers — but is fandom making our politics even more toxic?   ... Read more

03 Nov 2022

44 MINS

44:18

03 Nov 2022


#661

520. The Unintended Consequences of Working from Home

The last two years have radically changed the way we work — producing winners, losers, and a lot of surprises. ... Read more

27 Oct 2022

40 MINS

40:10

27 Oct 2022


#660

519. Has Globalization Failed?

It was supposed to boost prosperity and democracy at the same time. What really happened? According to the legal scholar Anthea Roberts, it depends which story you believe. ... Read more

20 Oct 2022

46 MINS

46:03

20 Oct 2022


#659

518. Are Personal Finance Gurus Giving You Bad Advice?

One Yale economist certainly thinks so. But even if he’s right, are economists any better? ... Read more

13 Oct 2022

1 HR 02 MINS

1:02:48

13 Oct 2022


#658

517. Are M.B.A.s to Blame for Wage Stagnation?

New research finds that bosses who went to business school pay their workers less. So what are M.B.A. programs teaching — and should they stop?  ... Read more

06 Oct 2022

47 MINS

47:35

06 Oct 2022


#657

Please Get Your Noise Out of My Ears (Ep. 439 Update)

The pandemic provided city dwellers with a break from the din of the modern world. Now the noise is coming back. What does that mean for our productivity, health, and basic sanity? ... Read more

29 Sep 2022

51 MINS

51:34

29 Sep 2022


#656

516. Nuclear Power Isn’t Perfect. Is It Good Enough?

Liberals endorse harm reduction when it comes to the opioid epidemic. Are they ready to take the same approach to climate change?  ... Read more

22 Sep 2022

54 MINS

54:16

22 Sep 2022


#655

Extra: Ken Burns | People I (Mostly) Admire

The documentary filmmaker, known for The Civil War, Jazz, and Baseball, turns his attention to the Holocaust, and asks what we can learn from the evils of the past. ... Read more

19 Sep 2022

46 MINS

46:08

19 Sep 2022


#654

515. When You Pray to God Online, Who Else Is Listening?

The pandemic moved a lot of religious activity onto the internet. With faith-based apps, Silicon Valley is turning virtual prayers into earthly rewards. Does this mean sharing user data? Dear God, let’s hope not … ... Read more

15 Sep 2022

44 MINS

44:32

15 Sep 2022


#653

This Is Your Brain on Pollution (Ep. 472 Update)

As the Biden administration rushes to address climate change, Stephen Dubner looks at another, hidden cost of air pollution — one that’s affecting how we think. ... Read more

08 Sep 2022

48 MINS

48:18

08 Sep 2022


#652

514. Roland Fryer Refuses to Lie to Black America

The controversial Harvard economist, recently back from a suspension, “broke a lot of glass early in my career,” he says. His research on school incentives and police brutality won him acclaim — but also enemies. Now he’s taking a hard look at corporate diversity programs. The common thread in his work? “I refuse to not tell the truth.” ... Read more

01 Sep 2022

59 MINS

59:54

01 Sep 2022


#651

513. Should Public Transit Be Free?

It boosts economic opportunity and social mobility. It’s good for the environment. So why do we charge people to use it? The short answer: it’s complicated.  ... Read more

25 Aug 2022

45 MINS

45:32

25 Aug 2022


#650

Why Is U.S. Media So Negative? (Ep. 477 Replay)

Breaking news! Sources say American journalism exploits our negativity bias to maximize profits, and social media algorithms add fuel to the fire. Stephen Dubner investigates. ... Read more

18 Aug 2022

47 MINS

47:47

18 Aug 2022


#649

The Pros and Cons of America’s (Extreme) Individualism (Ep. 470 Replay)

According to a decades-long research project, the U.S. is not only the most individualistic country on earth; we’re also high on indulgence, short-term thinking, and masculinity (but low on “uncertainty avoidance,” if that makes you feel better). We look at how these traits affect our daily lives and why we couldn’t change them even if we wanted to.  ... Read more

11 Aug 2022

48 MINS

48:06

11 Aug 2022


#648

The U.S. Is Just Different — So Let’s Stop Pretending We’re Not (Ep. 469 Replay)

We often look to other countries for smart policies on education, healthcare, infrastructure, etc. But can a smart policy be simply transplanted into a country as culturally unusual (and as supremely WEIRD) as America? ... Read more

04 Aug 2022

51 MINS

51:36

04 Aug 2022


#647

512. Does Philosophy Still Matter?

It used to be at the center of our conversations about politics and society. Scott Hershovitz (author of Nasty, Brutish, and Short) argues that philosophy still has a lot to say about work, justice, and parenthood. Our latest installment of the Freakonomics Radio Book Club. ... Read more

28 Jul 2022

49 MINS

49:52

28 Jul 2022


#646

511. Why Did You Marry That Person?

Sure, you were “in love.” But economists — using evidence from Bridgerton to Tinder — point to what’s called “assortative mating.” And it has some unpleasant consequences for society. ... Read more

21 Jul 2022

46 MINS

46:06

21 Jul 2022


#645

The Economist’s Guide to Parenting: 10 Years Later (Ep. 479 Replay)

In one of the earliest Freakonomics Radio episodes, we asked a bunch of economists with young kids how they approached child-rearing. Now the kids are old enough to talk — and they have a lot to say. We hear about nature vs. nurture, capitalism vs. Marxism, and why you don’t tell your friends that your father is an economist. ... Read more

14 Jul 2022

51 MINS

51:23

14 Jul 2022


#644

510. What Problems Does Crypto Solve, Anyway?

Boosters say blockchain technology will usher in a brave new era of decentralization. Are they right — and would it be a dream or a nightmare? (Part 3 of "What Can Blockchain Do for You?") ... Read more

07 Jul 2022

52 MINS

52:11

07 Jul 2022


#643

509. Are N.F.T.s All Scams?

Some of them are. With others, it’s more complicated (and more promising). We try to get past the Bored Apes and the ripoffs to see if we can find art on the blockchain. (Part 2 of " [What Can Blockchain Do for You?] (https://freakonomics.com/podcast-tag/what-can-blockchain-do-for-you/) ") ... Read more

30 Jun 2022

48 MINS

48:04

30 Jun 2022


#642

508. Does the Crypto Crash Mean the Blockchain Is Over?

No. But now is a good time to sort out the potential from the hype. Whether you’re bullish, bearish, or just confused, we’re here to explain what the blockchain can do for you. (Part 1 of [a series] (https://freakonomics.com/podcast-tag/what-can-blockchain-do-for-you/) .)  ... Read more

23 Jun 2022

49 MINS

49:30

23 Jun 2022


#641

507. 103 Pieces of Advice That May or May Not Work

Kevin Kelly calls himself “the most optimistic person in the world.” And he has a lot to say about parenting, travel, A.I., being luckier — and why we should spend way more time on YouTube. ... Read more

16 Jun 2022

40 MINS

40:23

16 Jun 2022