EconTalk is an award-winning weekly talk show about economics in daily life. Featured guests include renowned economics professors, Nobel Prize winners, and exciting speakers on all kinds of topical matters related to economic thought. Topics include health care, business cycles, economic growth, free trade, education, finance, politics, sports, book reviews, parenting, and the curiosities of everyday decision-making. Russ Roberts, of the Library of Economics and Liberty ( and the Hoover Institution, draws you in with lively guests and creative repartee. Look for related readings and the complete archive of previous shows at, where you can also comment on the podcasts and ask questions.

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Andy Matuschak on Books and Learning

Andy Matuschak talks about his essay "Why Books Don't Work" with host Russ Roberts. Matuschak argues that most books rely on transmissionism, the idea that an author can share an idea in print and the reader will absorb it. And yet after reading a non-fiction book, most readers will struggle to remember any of the ideas in the book...


 2019-08-05  1h6m

Shoshana Zuboff on Surveillance Capitalism

Shoshana Zuboff talks about her book Surveillance Capitalism with host Russ Roberts. She argues that the monetization of search engines and social networks by Google, Facebook, and other large tech firms threatens privacy and democracy.


 2019-07-29  1h33m

Chris Arnade on Dignity

Chris Arnade talks about his book, Dignity, with host Russ Roberts. Arnade quit his Wall Street trading job and criss-crossed America photographing and getting to know the addicted and homeless who struggle to find work and to survive. The conversation centers on what Arnade learned about Americans and about himself.


 2019-07-22  1h21m

Michael Brendan Dougherty on My Father Left Me Ireland

Michael Brendan Dougherty talks about his book My Father Left Me Ireland with host Russ Roberts. He talks about the role of cultural and national roots and the challenges of cultural freedom in America. What makes us feel part of something? Do you feel American or just someone who happens to live within its borders? When are people willing to die for their country or a cause? These are some of the questions Dougherty grapples with in his book and in this conversation.


 2019-07-15  1h33m

Arthur Brooks on Love Your Enemies

Arthur Brooks talks about his book Love Your Enemies with host Russ Roberts. He argues that contempt is destroying our political conversations and it's not good for us at the personal level either. Brooks makes the case for humility and tolerance. Along the way he discusses parenting, his past as professional musician, and the challenges of leading a think tank.


 2019-07-08  1h10m

Adam Cifu on the Case for Being a Medical Conservative

Adam Cifu talks about being a medical conservative with host Russ Roberts. He encourages doctors to appreciate the complexity of medical care and the reality that many medical techniques advocated by experts are not always beneficial or cost-effective. The conversation explores the challenges of finding reliable evidence to support medical interventions and the inherent uncertainty surrounding outcomes.


 2019-07-01  1h13m

Eric Topol on Deep Medicine

Eric Topol talks about his book Deep Medicine with host Russ Roberts. He argues that doctors spend too little face-to-face time with patients, and using artificial intelligence and machine learning is a chance to emphasize the human side of medicine and expand the power of human connection in healing. Topol surveys the current applications of technology to health care showing where its promise has been overstated and where it has the most impact...


 2019-06-24  1h8m

Anja Shortland on Kidnap

Anja Shortland talks about her book Kidnap with host Russ Roberts. Kidnapping is relatively common in parts of the world where government authority is weak. Shortland explores this strange, frightening, but surprisingly orderly world. The interaction between kidnappers, victims, and insurance companies creates a somewhat predictable set of prices for ransom and creates a relatively high chance of the safe return of those who are kidnapped.


 2019-06-17  1h17m

Bjorn Lomborg on the Costs and Benefits of Attacking Climate Change

Bjorn Lomborg talks with host Russ Roberts about the costs and benefits of attacking climate change. He argues that we should always be aware of tradeoffs and effectiveness when assessing policies to reduce global warming. He advocates for realistic solutions that consider the potential to improve human life in other ways. He is skeptical of the potential to move away from fossil fuels and argues that geo-engineering and adaptation may be the most effective ways to cope with climate change.


 2019-06-10  1h10m

Alain Bertaud on Cities, Planning, and Order Without Design

Alain Bertaud talks about his book Order Without Design with host Russ Roberts. He explores the role of zoning and planning alongside the emergent factors that affect the growth of cities. He emphasizes cities as places for people to work and looks at how preferences and choices shape cities. He also reflects upon the differing perspectives of urban planners and economists.


 2019-06-03  1h18m