Tim Harford The Undercover Economist

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The five best economics podcasts of 2016

It’s been a while since I revisited my list of the best economics podcasts. Here are my current top five.

  1. NPR’s Planet Money remains the very best economics podcast out there. Great production values, very creative, serious economics topics treated with a light touch. The team also produced the superb economics documentary, The Invention of Money.
  2. A new entrant on my list, the FT’s Alphachat podcast is a smart, well-informed and economically literate discussion of the economics and finance news of the week. (Disclosure: I’m employed by the FT so have a clear bias. But I don’t know the Alphachat crew, who are based in New York.)
  3. Freakonomics Radio remains a firm favourite. Stephen Dubner’s relentless curiosity keeps us rolling along, with a variety of serious topics (how can we fix education, or close the gender pay gap?) and the lighter stuff (can economics help us understand what makes a suspenseful screenplay?).
  4. If you like Alphachat, you’ll love Slate Money, presented by Felix Salmon with Cathy O’Neil and Jordan Weissmann. Imagine Alphachat, but everyone’s had a glass of pinot noir before they started, and you get the idea. Feisty yet highly intelligent.
  5.  If you’re more of a behavioural economics fan, try The Hidden Brain with Shankar Vedantam, featuring Daniel Pink. Recent episodes included a live show with Richard Thaler.

 

 

I’m a big podcast fan so let me give a shout out to a few others, including my own program More or Less, a weekly guide to the numbers that surround us – and the thirteen short episodes of Pop Up Economics, mostly by me but also featuring guests including Gillian Tett and Malcolm Gladwell.

 

Russ Roberts’s EconTalk is pure economics: Russ, a professor at George Mason University, has strong views of his own – he’s a Hayek man through and through – but brings on a wide range of guests and gives them a sympathetic hearing. Some great recent conversations with the excellent young blowhard Noah Smith and with Nobel laureate Jim Heckman.

Radio 4’s Analysis often covers economics topics, as does Peter Day’s World of Business (in depth, on location) and Evan Davis’s The Bottom Line (studio discussion with business leaders).

The London School of Economics has a stellar collection of speakers and releases many events as podcasts.

The FT produces a range of podcasts but I particularly enjoy the FT Money Show and World Weekly.

Finally, in the hidden gems category, check out No Such Thing As A Fish, and Futility Closet – both addictive podcasts that have nothing whatsoever to do with economics.

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2nd of February, 2016MarginaliaRadioComments off
Radio

Not one but two new Radio 4 series

A new series of “Pop Up Ideas” started last Wednesday on Radio 4 at 8.30pm, featuring our usual trademark combination of academic rigour and live-action storytelling: http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/thpop

And a new Radio 4 series of More or Less starts this afternoon at 4.30pm: http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/moreorless

 

 

Marginalia

More or Less wins the Royal Statistical Society award for excellence in broadcast journalism

I’m delighted about this:

The winners of the 2013 awards for statistical excellence in journalism have been announced. Journalists at The Times, The Detail and BBC Radio 4 have been commended for their work. The awards, now in their seventh year, are made in three categories – print, broadcast and online – and recognise work first published or broadcast in the preceding calendar year.

…In the broadcast category, BBC Radio 4’s “More or Less” programme presented by Tim Harford is the winner. The judges considered this to be a really informative exploration of the contentious issue of waiting times at UK borders during the Olympics and the contrasting estimates of different agencies. They particularly highlighted how choice of data can have a big impact on the story that is told.

It’s the fourth year in succession that the More or Less team has been commended by the Royal Statistical Society for its excellence in journalism. We won outright this year and in 2010. Very chuffed for the team.

Marginalia

Pop Up Ideas with Gillian Tett and Malcolm Gladwell

Gillian Tett’s excellent talk for “Pop Up Ideas” is now available to download (or you can subscribe to the podcast). You can also download Malcolm Gladwell’s superb talk from last week.

16th of July, 2013MarginaliaRadioComments off
Marginalia

Pop-Up Ideas with Malcolm Gladwell, Gillian Tett, and David Kilcullen

We’re following “Pop-Up Economics” by inviting guest speakers to tell us about ideas from anthropology and political science – all wrapped up in stories to remember. We recorded these short (13 minute) talks in front of a live audience in the foyer of the Royal Festival Hall, and I think they sounded terrific. I can’t wait to hear the program itself.

The show is being broadcast on Radio 4 at 9.30am each Tuesday morning, from today. Our guest speakers are Malcolm Gladwell, author of “The Tipping Point”, anthropologist and financial journalist Gillian Tett, and counterinsurgency expert David Kilcullen. Plus me!

The podcast episodes should appear on the Pop-Up Economics feed.

Radio

Next series of Pop Up Ideas to be recorded on June 10th

Pop Up Economics is now Pop Up Ideas, and the next series will be inspired by ideas from anthropology and political science. We’re recording the entire series in front of a live audience – please come along. You can apply for free tickets here.

Speakers will include anthropologist / capital markets editor of the Financial Times, Gillian Tett; counterinsurgency expert David Kilcullen; and a man who needs no introduction, Malcolm Gladwell. And yours truly, of course.

26th of May, 2013RadioSpeechesComments off
Radio

A spreadsheet error, a homework assignment, and a dose of reality for empirical economics

This subject has been covered ad nauseam in the econoblogosphere, but I’m still proud of our short More or Less documentary on how a student undercut the economics paper that austerity-minded politicians love to cite.

For more free More or Less podcasts, click here.

Highlights

The astonishing life of Bill Phillips

This is the latest video from the recording of my my radio series, “Pop Up Economics“. (Alternative link to watch.)


Marginalia

Pop-Up Economics, Pulp-O-Mized

Pulp-O-Mizer_Cover_Image

The Pulp-O-Mizer. More about Pop-Up Economics.

 

7th of February, 2013MarginaliaRadioComments off
Highlights

Thomas Schelling, Henry Kissinger, and Dr Strangelove

The full video of the latest episode of Pop Up Economics (free podcast here). Enjoy and please spread the world. (You can also watch here.)



3rd of February, 2013HighlightsRadioVideoComments off
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