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Stephen Dubner

Date
Length

Should You Give Kids an Allowance or Make Them Get Jobs?

How do kids learn about money? What’s the big problem with education? And who made Raiders of the Lost Ark?

6/26/22
34:47

Season 11, Episode 43

When the world went into lockdown, experts predicted a rise in intimate-partner assaults. What actually happened was more complicated.

6/23/22
50:30

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.)

6/22/22
49:29

How Simple Is Too Simple?

Why are humans so eager for magic-bullet solutions? Can you explain how a pen works? And how does Angela feel about being forever branded “the grit lady”?

6/19/22
36:29

Season 11, Episode 42

In ancient Rome, it was bread and circuses. Today, it’s a World Cup, an Olympics, and a new Saudi-backed golf league that’s challenging the P.G.A. Tour. Can a sporting event really repair a country’s reputation — or will it trigger the dreaded Streisand Effect?

6/16/22
50:30

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.

6/15/22
42:43

Should Toilets Be Free?

Why do Americans tip so much? What happened when Angie eliminated grading in a college course? And why did almost every pay toilet in the U.S.A. vanish between 1970 and 1980?

6/12/22
35:21

Solar Geoengineering Would Be Radical. It Might Also Be Necessary.

David Keith has spent his career studying ways to reflect sunlight away from the earth. It could reduce the risks of climate change — but it won’t save us.

6/10/22
59:59

Season 11, Episode 41

The social psychologist Robert Cialdini is a pioneer in the science of persuasion. His 1984 book Influence is a classic, and he has just published an expanded and revised edition. In this episode of The Freakonomics Radio Book Club, he gives a master class in the seven psychological levers that bewitch our rational minds and lead us to buy, behave, or believe without a second thought.

6/9/22
50:30

What Is Sportswashing (and Does It Work)?

In ancient Rome, it was bread and circuses. Today, it’s a World Cup, an Olympics, and a new Saudi-backed golf league that’s challenging the P.G.A. Tour. Can a sporting event really repair a country’s reputation — or will it trigger the dreaded Streisand Effect?

6/8/22
53:33
6/5/22
40:40

Did Domestic Violence Really Spike During the Pandemic?

When the world went into lockdown, experts predicted a rise in intimate-partner assaults. What actually happened was more complicated.

6/1/22
54:17
5/29/22
41:26

Season 11, Episode 39

As the Supreme Court considers overturning Roe v. Wade, we look back at Steve Levitt’s controversial research on an unintended consequence of the 1973 ruling.

5/26/22
50:30

Introducing “Off Leash”

In this new podcast from the Freakonomics Radio Network, dog-cognition expert and bestselling author Alexandra Horowitz (Inside of a Dog) takes us inside the scruffy, curious, joyful world of dogs. This is the first episode of Off Leash; you can find more episodes in your podcast app now.

5/25/22
42:58
5/22/22
36:59

Season 11, Episode 38

Enrollment is down for the first time in memory, and critics complain college is too expensive, too elitist, and too politicized. The economist Chris Paxson — who happens to be the president of Brown University — does not agree. (Part 3 of “Freakonomics Radio Goes Back to School.”)

5/19/22
50:30

What Is the Future of College — and Does It Have Room for Men?

Educators and economists tell us all the reasons college enrollment has been dropping, especially for men, and how to stop the bleeding. (Part 4 of “Freakonomics Radio Goes Back to School.”)

5/18/22
53:32

Smell

Dogs are, above all, creatures of the nose. What can they sniff out, and what can we learn about smelling by following them? Alexandra Horowitz talks to a detection-dog handler and a food critic about olfaction, then puts some Freakonomics hosts’ noses to the test.

5/16/22
35:54
5/15/22
39:27

Abortion and Crime, Revisited (Update)

As the Supreme Court considers overturning Roe v. Wade, we look back at Steve Levitt’s controversial research on an unintended consequence of the 1973 ruling.

5/11/22
61:17
5/8/22
44:12

“I Don’t Think the Country Is Turning Away From College.”

Enrollment is down for the first time in memory, and critics complain college is too expensive, too elitist, and too politicized. The economist Chris Paxson — who happens to be the president of Brown University — does not agree. (Part 3 of “Freakonomics Radio Goes Back to School.”)

5/4/22
47:58
5/1/22
37:42

Season 11, Episode 35

The political scientist Yuen Yuen Ang argues that different forms of government create different styles of corruption. The U.S. and China have more in common than we’d like to admit — but Russia is a different story, which could explain its willingness to invade Ukraine.

4/28/22
50:30

The University of Impossible-to-Get-Into

America’s top colleges are facing record demand. So why don’t they increase supply? (Part 2 of “Freakonomics Radio Goes Back to School.”)

4/27/22
62:49
4/24/22
29:04

Season 11, Episode 34

Nearly 2 percent of America is grassy green. Sure, lawns are beautiful and useful and they smell great. But are the costs — financial, environmental and otherwise — worth the benefits?

4/21/22
50:30

What Exactly Is College For?

We think of them as intellectual enclaves and the surest route to a better life. But U.S. colleges also operate like firms, trying to differentiate their products to win market share and prestige points. In the first episode of a special series, we ask what our chaotic system gets right — and wrong. (Part 1 of “Freakonomics Radio Goes Back to School.”)

4/20/22
49:47
4/17/22
32:42

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