Freakonomics Radio

by ​Dubner Productions and Stitcher

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. Special features include series like “The Secret Life of a C.E.O.” as well as a live game show, “Tell Me Something I Don’t Know.” 

  

Latest Episodes

375. The Most Interesting Fruit in the World

The banana used to be a luxury good. Now it’s the most popular fruit in the U.S. and elsewhere. But the production efficiencies that made it so cheap have also made it vulnerable to a deadly fungus that may wipe out the one variety most of us eat. Scientists do have a way to save it — but will Big Banana let them?


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Posted on 18 April 2019 | 3:00 am


374. How Spotify Saved the Music Industry (But Not Necessarily Musicians)

Daniel Ek, a 23-year-old Swede who grew up on pirated music, made the record labels an offer they couldn’t refuse: a legal platform to stream all the world’s music. Spotify reversed the labels’ fortunes, made Ek rich, and thrilled millions of music fans. But what has it done for all those musicians stuck in the long tail?


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Posted on 11 April 2019 | 3:00 am


373. Why Rent Control Doesn’t Work

As cities become ever-more expensive, politicians and housing advocates keep calling for rent control. Economists think that’s a terrible idea. They say it helps a small (albeit noisy) group of renters, but keeps overall rents artificially high by disincentivizing new construction. So what happens next?


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Posted on 4 April 2019 | 3:00 am


372. Freakonomics Radio Live: “Would You Eat a Piece of Chocolate Shaped Like Dog Poop?”

What your disgust level says about your politics, how Napoleon influenced opera, why New York City’s subways may finally run on time, and more. Five compelling guests tell Stephen Dubner, co-host Angela Duckworth, and fact-checker Jody Avirgan lots of things they didn’t know.


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Posted on 28 March 2019 | 3:00 am


Why You Shouldn’t Open a Restaurant (Ep. 347 Update)

Kenji Lopez-Alt became a rock star of the food world by bringing science into the kitchen in a way that everyday cooks can appreciate. Then he dared to start his own restaurant — and discovered problems that even science can’t solve.


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Posted on 21 March 2019 | 3:00 am


371. A Free-Trade Democrat in the Trump White House

For years, Gary Cohn thought he’d be the next C.E.O. of Goldman Sachs. Instead, he became the “adult in the room” in a chaotic administration. Cohn talks about the fights he won, the fights he lost, and the fights he was no longer willing to have. Also: why he and Trump are still on speaking terms even after he reportedly called the president “a professional liar.”


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Posted on 14 March 2019 | 3:00 am


370. How to Fail Like a Pro

The road to success is paved with failure, so you might as well learn to do it right. (Ep. 5 of the “How to Be Creative” series.)


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Posted on 7 March 2019 | 4:00 am


369. A Good Idea Is Not Good Enough

Whether you’re building a business or a cathedral, execution is everything. We ask artists, scientists, and inventors how they turned ideas into reality. And we find out why it’s so hard for a group to get things done — and what you can do about it. (Ep. 4 of the “How to Be Creative” series.)


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Posted on 28 February 2019 | 4:00 am


368. Where Do Good Ideas Come From?

Whether you’re mapping the universe, hosting a late-night talk show, or running a meeting, there are a lot of ways to up your idea game. Plus: the truth about brainstorming. (Ep. 3 of the “How to Be Creative” series.)


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Posted on 21 February 2019 | 4:00 am