Radiolab is a show about curiosity. Where sound illuminates ideas, and the boundaries blur between science, philosophy, and human experience.

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Sunday 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM on WUSF 89.7

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Jad Abumrad

The son of a scientist and a doctor, Jad Abumrad did most of his growing up in Tennessee, before studying creative writing and music composition at Oberlin College in Ohio. Following graduation, Abumrad wrote music for films, and reported and produced documentaries for a variety of local and national public radio programs, including On The Media,Studio 360 with Kurt Andersen, Morning Edition, All Things Considered and WNYC's "24 Hours at the Edge of Ground Zero."

Robert Krulwich

Robert Krulwich is co-host of Radiolab, WNYC's Peabody Award-winning program that examines big questions in science, philosophy and the human experience through compelling storytelling.  Today, Radiolab is one of public radio's most popular shows.  Its podcasts are downloaded over 4 million times each month and the program is carried on 437 stations across the nation. In addition to Radiolab, Krulwich reports for National Public Radio. “Krulwich Wonders” is his NPR blog featuring drawings, cartoons and videos that illustrate hard-to-see concepts in science.

From Radiolab

  • G: Problem Space
    <p>In the first episode of G, Radiolab’s miniseries on intelligence, we went back to the 1970s to meet a group of Black parents who put the IQ test on trial. The lawsuit, Larry P v Riles, ended with a ban on IQ tests for all Black students in the state of California, a ban that’s still in place today. </p> <p>This week, we meet the families in California dealing with that ban forty years later. Families the ban was designed to protect, but who now say it discriminates against their children. How much have IQ tests changed since the 70s? And can they be used for good? We talk to the people responsible for designing the most widely used modern IQ test, and along the way, we find out that at the very same moment the IQ test was being put on trial in California, on the other side of the country, it was being used to solve one of the biggest public health problems of the 20th century.</p> <p><em>This episode was reported and produced by Pat Walters, Rachael Cusick and Jad Abumrad, with production help from Bethel Habte.</em></p> <p><em>Music by Alex Overington. Fact-checking by Diane Kelly.</em></p> <p>Special thanks to Lee Romney, Moira Gunn and Tech Nation, and Lee Rosevere for his song All the Answers.</p> <p> </p> <p><em>Radiolab</em>’s “G” is supported in part by Science Sandbox, a Simons Foundation initiative dedicated to engaging everyone with the process of science.</p>
  • G: the Miseducation of Larry P
    <p>Are some ideas so dangerous we shouldn’t even talk about them? That question brought <em>Radiolab</em>’s senior editor, Pat Walters, to a subject that at first he thought was long gone: the measuring of human intelligence with IQ tests. Turns out, the tests are all around us. In the workplace. The criminal justice system. Even the NFL. And they’re massive in schools. More than a million US children are IQ tested every year.</p> <p>We begin Radiolab Presents: “G” with a sentence that stopped us all in our tracks: In the state of California, it is off-limits to administer an IQ test to a child if he or she is Black. That’s because of a little-known case called Larry P v Riles that in the 1970s … put the IQ test itself on trial. With the help of reporter Lee Romney, we investigate how that lawsuit came to be, where IQ tests came from, and what happened to one little boy who got caught in the crossfire.</p> <p><em>This episode was reported and produced by Lee Romney, Rachael Cusick and Pat Walters.</em></p> <p><em>Music by Alex Overington. </em><em>Fact-checking by Diane Kelly.</em></p> <p><em>Special thanks to Elie Mistal, Chenjerai Kumanyika, Amanda Stern, Nora Lyons, Ki Sung, Public Advocates, Michelle Wilson, Peter Fernandez, John Schaefer. Lee Romney’s reporting was supported in part by USC’s Center for Health Journalism.</em></p> <p><em>Radiolab’s “G” is supported in part by Science Sandbox, a Simons Foundation initiative dedicated to engaging everyone with the process of science.</em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href=";utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p>
  • Neither Confirm Nor Deny
    <p> How a sunken nuclear submarine, a crazy billionaire, and a mechanical claw gave birth to a phrase that has hounded journalists and lawyers for 40 years and embodies the tension between the public’s desire for transparency and the government’s need to keep secrets.  </p>
  • The Good Samaritan
    <p class="p1">On a Tuesday afternoon back in the summer of 2017, Scotty Hatton and Scottie Wightman both made a decision to help someone in need. They both paid a price for their actions that day, which have led to a legal, moral, and scientific puzzle about how we balance accountability and forgiveness. </p> <p class="p1">In this episode, we go to Bath County, Kentucky, where, as one health official put it, opioids have created “a hole the size of Kentucky.” We talk to the people on all sides of this story about stemming the tide of overdoses, we wrestle with the science of poison and fear, and we try to figure out when the drive to protect and help those around us should rise above the law.</p> <p class="p1"><em>This story was reported by Peter Andrey Smith with Matt Kielty, and produced by Matt Kielty.</em></p> <p><em>Special thanks to Megan Fisher, Alan Caudill, Nick Jones, Dan Wermerling, Terry Bunn, Robin Thompson and the staff at KIPP RICK, Charles Landon, Charles P Gore, Jim McCarthy, Ann Marie Farina, Dr. Jeremy Faust and Dr. Ed Boyer, Justin Brower, Kathy Robinson, Zoe Renfro, John Bucknell, Chris Moraff, Jeremiah Laster, Tommy Kane, Jim McCarthy, Sarah Wakeman, Al Tompkins, Ken Williams, Fiona Thomas, and Corey S. Davis. </em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href=";utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank"></a>. </em></p> <p class="p1"> </p> <p class="p2"> </p> <p class="p5">CDC recommendations on helping people who overdose: <a href=""></a></p> <p class="p2">Find out where to get naloxone: <a href=""></a></p> <p class="p3"> </p> <p class="p1"> </p> <p class="p1"> </p> <p> </p>
  • Bit Flip
    <p><span>Back in 2003 Belgium was holding a national election. One of their first where the votes would be cast and counted on computers. Thousands of hours of preparation went into making it unhackable. And when the day of the vote came, everything seemed to have gone well. That was, until a cosmic chain of events caused a single bit to flip and called the outcome into question.</span></p> <p><span>Today on Radiolab, we travel from a voting booth in Brussels to the driver's seat of a runaway car in the Carolinas, exploring the massive effects tiny bits of stardust can have on us unwitting humans.</span></p> <p><em>T</em><em>his episode was reported and produced by Simon Adler and Annie McEwen. </em></p> <p><em><em><em><span><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href=";utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank"></a>. </em></span></em></em></em></p> <p><span>And check out our accompanying short video <a href="">Bit Flip</a>: </span><span>the tale of a Belgian election and a cosmic ray that got in the way.</span><span> This video was produced by Simon Adler with illustration from Kelly Gallagher.</span></p>
  • Dinopocalypse Redux
    <p>Using high-powered ballistics experiments, fancy computer algorithms, and good old-fashioned ancient geology, scientists have woven together a theory about the extinction of the dinosaurs that is so precise, so hot, so <em>instantaneous</em>, as to seem unimaginable. Today, we bring you this story, first published on Radiolab in 2013, plus an update: a spot on planet Earth, newly discovered, that - if it holds true - has the potential to tell us about the first <em>three</em> <em>hours</em> after the dinos died.</p> <p><em>This update was reported by Molly Webster and was produced with help from Audrey Quinn. </em></p> <p><em>We teamed up with some amazing collaborators for Apocalyptical, the Radiolab live show that this episode is based on. Find out more about these wildly talented <a href="">folks</a>: </em><em>comedians Reggie Watts, Patton Oswalt, Simon Amstell, Ophira Eisenberg and Kurt Braunohler; musicians On Fillmore and Noveller, and Erth Visual &amp; Physical Inc.</em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href=";utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank"></a>. </em></p> <p> </p> <p>To learn more about the North Dakota site - known as Tanis, for all you Indiana Jones fans - check out <a href="">the recent paper</a>. Make sure you spend time digging into those supplemental materials, it contains all the juice ! </p> <p>And, <a href="">go watch <em>Apocalyptical</em></a>; to dinosaurs and beyond!</p> <p> </p> <p> </p>
  • Fu-Go
    <p>This week we’re going back to a favorite episode from 2015.</p> <p>During World War II, something happened that nobody ever talks about. This is a tale of mysterious balloons, cowboy sheriffs, and young children caught up in the winds of war. And silence, the terror of silence.</p> <p>Reporters Peter Lang-Stanton and Nick Farago tell us the story of a seemingly ridiculous, almost whimsical series of attacks on the US between November of 1944 and May of 1945. With the help of writer Ross Coen, geologist Elisa Bergslien, and professor Mike Sweeney, we uncover a national secret that led to tragedy in a sleepy logging town in south central Oregon.</p> <p> Check out pictures of the ghostly balloons <a href="">here</a>. </p> <p><em>Special thanks to Annie Patzke, Leda and Wayne Hunter, and Ilana Sol. Special thanks also for the use of their music to <a href="">Jeff Taylor</a>, <a href="">David Wingo</a> for the use of "Opening" and "Doghouse" - from the <a href="">Take Shelter </a>soundtrack, <a href="">Justin Walter</a>'s "Mind Shapes" from his album Lullabies and Nightmares, and <a href="">Michael Manning</a> for the use of <a href="">"Save"</a>. </em></p> <p><em> </em><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href=";utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank"></a>. </em></p>
  • Americanish
    <p class="p1">In 1903, the Supreme Court ruled that Isabel Gonzales was not a citizen of the United States. Then again, they said, she wasn’t an immigrant either. And they said that the US territory of Puerto Rico, Isabel’s home, was “foreign to the United States in a domestic sense.” Since then, the US has cleared up at least some of the confusion about US territories and the status of people born in them.</p> <p class="p1">But, more than a hundred years later, there is still a US territory that has been left in limbo: American Samoa. It is the only place on earth that is US soil, but people who are born there are not automatically US citizens. When we visit American Samoa, we discover that there are some pretty surprising reasons why many American Samoans prefer it that way. </p> <p class="p1"> <em>This episode was reported and produced by Julia Longoria.</em></p> <p><em>Special thanks to John Wasko.</em></p> <p><em>Check out Sam Erman's book</em> <a href=""><em>Almost Citizens</em></a> and <em>Doug Mack's book </em><a href=""><em>The Not Quite States of America</em></a><em>.</em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href=";utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank"></a>. </em></p>
  • For Whom the Cowbell Tolls
    <p>When Nancy Holten was 8 years old her mom put her in a moving van. She fell asleep, woke up in Switzerland, and she's been there ever since. Nancy is big into animal rights, crystals, and various forms of natural and holistic healing. She’s also a viral sensation: the Dutch woman apparently so annoying, her Swiss town denied her citizenship. In this episode we go to the little village of Gipf-Oberfrick to meet Nancy, talk with the town, and ask the question: what does it mean and what does it take to belong to a place?</p> <p><em>This episode was reported by Kelly Prime and was produced by Kelly Prime and Annie McEwen. </em></p> <p><em>Special thanks to reporter Anna Mayumi Kerber, the tireless fixer and translator for this story. Thanks also to Dominik Hangartner and to the very talented yodelers Ai Dineen and Gregory Corbino.</em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href=";utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank"></a>. </em></p>
  • Bliss
    <p>This week Jad and Radiolab alum Tim Howard revisit a favorite episode from 2012.</p> <p>Because moments of total, world-shaking bliss are not easy to come by. Maybe that's what makes them feel so life-altering when they strike. And so worth chasing. This hour: stories of striving, grasping, tripping, and falling for happiness, perfection, and ideals.  </p> <p>With <a href="">Alexander Gamme</a>, <a href="">Arika Okrent</a>, <a href="">Richard Sproat</a>, and <a href="">Ken Libbrecht</a>.</p> <p><em>This update was produced with help from Audrey Quinn.</em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href=";utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank"></a>. </em></p>