To get a lot of followers on Twitter, do you need to follow a lot of other Tweeps? And if not, why not?
Since the beginning of civilization, we’ve thought that human waste was worthless and dangerous. What if we were wrong?
Five things you don’t know about the NFL labor standoff
Could it be that cities are "our greatest invention" -- that, despite a reputation as black-soot-spewing engines of doom, they in fact make us richer, smarter, happier and (believe it!) greener?
It's not about how much something hurts -- it's how you remember the pain. This week, lessons on pain from the New York City subway, the professional hockey rink, and a landmark study of colonoscopy patients. So have a listen; we promise, it won't hurt a bit.
What do a computer hacker, an Indiana farm boy, and Napoleon Bonaparte have in common? The past, present, and future of food science.
The "molecular gastronomy" movement -- which gets a bump in visibility next month with the publication of the mammoth cookbook "Modernist Cuisine" -- is all about bringing more science into the kitchen. In many ways, it's the opposite of the "slow food" movement. In this episode, you'll hear chieftains from ...
Levitt and Dubner field questions from the public and hold forth on everything from dating strategies and rock-and-roll accordion music to whether different nations have different economic identities. Oh, and also: is it worthwhile to vote?
How economics -- and emotion -- have turned our garbage into such a mess
What happens when the most disturbing ideas are also the best?
They should! It's a cardinal rule: more expensive items are supposed to be qualitatively better than their cheaper versions. But is that true for wine?
It’s the banking tool that got millions of people around the world to stop wasting money on the lottery. So why won't state and federal officials in the U.S. give it a chance?
For the most part, Americans don't like the simple, boring act of putting money in a savings account. We do, however, love to play the lottery. So what if you combined the two, creating a new kind of savings account with a lottery payout?
The U.S. president is often called the "leader of free world." But if you ask an economist or a Constitutional scholar how much the occupant of the Oval Office matters, they won't say much. We look at what the data have to say about measuring leadership, and its impact on ...
The NFL is very good at making money. So why on earth doesn't it sell ad space on the one piece of real estate that football fans can’t help but see: the players themselves? The explanation is trickier than you might think. It has to do with Peyton Manning, with ...
It was a pretty good baseball season -- especially if you're a fan of the Yankees, Rays, Twins, Rangers, Reds, Braves, Phillies, or Giants, all of whom made the playoffs. But the post-season just opened with a telling event, a no-hitter pitched by the Phillies' Roy Halladay, which shows what's ...
Since its publication in 2005, millions of people have read "Freakonomics." The best selling book, written by economist Steven Levitt and New York Times reporter Stephen Dubner, examines pop culture and everyday life through the economic lens of incentives. The result was unexpectedly funny and popular enough to have spawned a newly emerging media empire, including Freakonomics Radio and "Freakonomics: The Movie."
Steve Levitt talks about why the center cannot hold in penalty kicks, why a running track hurts home-field advantage, and why the World Cup is an economist's dream.
In this episode of Freakonomics Radio, we explore a way to make 1.1 million schoolkids feel like they have 1.1 million teachers.
Do you "fake it"? If so, you're hardly alone. In this episode, you'll hear how everyone from the President of the United States to a kosher-keeping bacon lover lives in a state of fallen grace. All the time. And gets by.