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Freaconomics Radio

“One Does Not Know Where an Insight Will Come From” | People I (Mostly) Admire: Kerwin Charles

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The dean of Yale’s School of Management grew up in a small village in Guyana. During his unlikely journey, he has researched video-gaming habits, communicable disease, and why so many African-Americans haven’t had the kind of success he’s had. Steve Levitt talks to Charles about his parents’ encouragement, his love of Sports Illustrated, and how he talks to his American-born kids about the complicated history of Blackness in America.  See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Freaconomics Radio

Does Anyone Really Know What Socialism Is? (Ep. 408 Rebroadcast)

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Trump says it would destroy us. Biden needs the voters who support it (especially the Bernie voters). The majority of millennials would like it to replace capitalism. But what is “it”? We bring in the economists to sort things out and tell us what the U.S. can learn from the good (and bad) experiences of other (supposedly) socialist countries. See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Freaconomics Radio

What if Your Company Had No Rules?

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Netflix co-founder Reed Hastings came to believe that corporate rules can kill creativity and innovation. In this latest edition of the Freakonomics Radio Book Club, guest host Maria Konnikova talks to Hastings about his new book, No Rules Rules, and why for some companies the greatest risk is taking no risks at all. See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Freaconomics Radio

431. Why Can’t Schools Get What the N.F.L. Has?

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Thanks to daily Covid testing and regimented protocols, the new football season is underway. Meanwhile, most teachers, students, and parents are essentially waiting for the storm to pass. And school isn’t even a contact sport (usually). See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Freaconomics Radio

"I Started Crying When I Realized How Beautiful the Universe Is” | People I (Mostly) Admire Ep. 2: Mayim Bialik

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She’s best known for playing neurobiologist Amy Farrah Fowler on The Big Bang Theory, but the award-winning actress has a rich life outside of her acting career, as a teacher, mother — and a real-life neuroscientist.  Steve Levitt tries to learn more about this one-time academic and Hollywood non-conformist, who is both very similar to him and also quite his opposite. See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Freaconomics Radio

America’s Hidden Duopoly (Ep. 356 Rebroadcast)

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We all know our political system is “broken” — but what if that’s not true? Some say the Republicans and Democrats constitute a wildly successful industry that has colluded to kill off competition, stifle reform, and drive the country apart. So what are you going to do about it? See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Freaconomics Radio

430. Will a Covid-19 Vaccine Change the Future of Medical Research?

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We explore the science, scalability, and (of course) economics surrounding the global vaccine race. Guests include the chief medical officer of the first U.S. firm to go to Phase 3 trials with a vaccine candidate; a former F.D.A. commissioner who’s been warning of a pandemic for years; and an economist who thinks Covid-19 may finally change how diseases are cured. See omnystudio.com/policies/listener for privacy information.

Freaconomics Radio

Introducing “People I (Mostly) Admire"

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A new interview show with host Steve Levitt. Today he speaks with the Harvard psychologist and linguist Steven Pinker. By cataloging the steady march of human progress, the self-declared “polite Canadian” has managed to enrage people on opposite ends of the political spectrum. Levitt tries to understand why. 

Freaconomics Radio

The Economics of Sports Gambling (Ep. 388 Rebroadcast)

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What happens when tens of millions of fantasy-sports players are suddenly able to bet real money on real games? We’re about to find out. A recent Supreme Court decision has cleared the way to bring an estimated $300 billion in black-market sports betting into the light. We sort out the winners and losers.

Freaconomics Radio

429. Is Economic Growth the Wrong Goal?

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The endless pursuit of G.D.P., argues the economist Kate Raworth, shortchanges too many people and also trashes the planet. Economic theory, she says, “needs to be rewritten” — and Raworth has tried, in a book called Doughnut Economics. It has found an audience among reformers, and now the city of Amsterdam is going whole doughnut.

Freaconomics Radio

How the Supermarket Helped America Win the Cold War (Ep. 386 Rebroadcast)

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Aisle upon aisle of fresh produce, cheap meat, and sugary cereal — a delicious embodiment of free-market capitalism, right? Not quite. The supermarket was in fact the endpoint of the U.S. government’s battle for agricultural abundance against the U.S.S.R. Our farm policies were built to dominate, not necessarily to nourish — and we are still living with the consequences.

Freaconomics 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.

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