Work: Should You Do Less of It?

The Next Big Idea | 13 May 2021 | 0h 47m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with James Suzman about his book Work: A History of How We Spend Our Time. Draws lessons from the way San hunter-gathers spend their time to argue for spending less time toiling away at labour we loathe and more time working at things we love.

Voice: You Are What You Speak

The Next Big Idea | 25 March 2021 | 1h 31m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with John Colapinto about his book This Is the Voice. Backgrounds how our voices are our social presence, conveying high-resolution information about such things as our sex, class, background, education and emotional state. Discusses the evolution of deeper male voices, the recent deepening of female voices, and political oratory. Explores the future of audio, arguing that podcast conversations are a higher-bandwidth way of delivering ideas than books.

Drug Use: Is Getting High an American Right?

The Next Big Idea | 4 March 2021 | 1h 24m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Carl Hart about his book Drug Use for Grown-Ups. Backgrounds research that suggests responsible use of drugs like cannabis, cocaine, heroin, and meth can be a good thing. Argues that the criminalisation of drugs is racist.

Alchemy: How Our Creations Recreate Us

The Next Big Idea | 21 July 2020 | 0h 47m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Ainissa Ramirez about her book The Alchemy of Us: How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another. Draws on stories about eight key inventions to show how our innovations can change us in surprising ways.

Upstream: Solving Problems Before They Happen

The Next Big Idea | 14 July 2020 | 0h 47m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Dan Heath about his book Upstream: The Quest to Solve Problems Before They Happen. Explores what it takes to root out problems at their source, both in our own lives and in the larger world.

Civilization: Recalculating the Price of Progress

The Next Big Idea | 7 July 2020 | 0h 48m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Chris Ryan abut ideas from his book Civilized to Death: The Price of Progress. Explores, with an evolutionary psychology perspective, what we can learn from people in non-civilised societies, who tend to be healthier, happier and more fulfilled, notwithstanding their lack of cutting edge science and technology.

Adam Grant on Finding Balance

The Next Big Idea | 12 May 2020 | 0h 48m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Adam Grant about work-life balance, the future of education, and the addictive nature of generosity. Insights throughout on working more effectively. A personal favourite was that adding video to a phone call worsens our ability to read emotional cues.

Big Ideas in Uncertain Times: Steven Johnson on Scientific Breakthroughs

The Next Big Idea | 9 April 2020 | 0h 32m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Steven Johnson about innovations likely to emerge from the covid-19 pandemic. Draws on examples from his book Ghost Map about the 1854 cholera epidemic in London.