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Science

Science Weekly

Updated about 17 hours ago

Science
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The award-winning Science Weekly podcast is the best place to learn about the big discoveries and debates in biology, chemistry, physics – and sometimes even maths. Ian Sample, Hannah Devlin and  Nicola Davis meet the great thinkers and doers in science and technology. Science has never sounded so good! We'd love to hear what you think, so get in touch via @guardianaudio or podcasts@theguardian.com

Read more

The award-winning Science Weekly podcast is the best place to learn about the big discoveries and debates in biology, chemistry, physics – and sometimes even maths. Ian Sample, Hannah Devlin and  Nicola Davis meet the great thinkers and doers in science and technology. Science has never sounded so good! We'd love to hear what you think, so get in touch via @guardianaudio or podcasts@theguardian.com

iTunes Ratings

189 Ratings
Average Ratings
132
30
9
11
7

Quality

By D20chick - Dec 20 2017
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Pacing is good, thoroughy enjoyable for those topics you already have an interest in.

Best science podcast

By Lisa Gunner - Sep 18 2016
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This is my favorite science podcast.

iTunes Ratings

189 Ratings
Average Ratings
132
30
9
11
7

Quality

By D20chick - Dec 20 2017
Read more
Pacing is good, thoroughy enjoyable for those topics you already have an interest in.

Best science podcast

By Lisa Gunner - Sep 18 2016
Read more
This is my favorite science podcast.

Listen to:

Cover image of Science Weekly

Science Weekly

Updated about 17 hours ago

Read more

The award-winning Science Weekly podcast is the best place to learn about the big discoveries and debates in biology, chemistry, physics – and sometimes even maths. Ian Sample, Hannah Devlin and  Nicola Davis meet the great thinkers and doers in science and technology. Science has never sounded so good! We'd love to hear what you think, so get in touch via @guardianaudio or podcasts@theguardian.com

Mars is barred: why we shouldn't go to the red planet – Science Weekly podcast

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Elon Musk believes we should colonise Mars to ensure the survival of the human race. But is this reasoning compelling enough? Hannah Devlin ponders the case against setting our sites on Mars

Oct 19 2018

27mins

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Inside the mind of the bullshitter: Science Weekly podcast

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In 1986, philosopher Harry G Frankfurt wrote: “One of the most salient features of our culture is that there is so much bullshit.” This was the opening line of his seminal essay (later a book), On Bullshit, in which Frankfurt put forward his theory on the subject. Three decades later, psychologists are finally getting to grips with what might be going on in the minds of those who dabble in the dark arts of BS. Ian Sample asks two such psychologists what we can do to fight back. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Oct 25 2019

29mins

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The dark side of happiness – Science Weekly podcast

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Happiness means something different to all of us, be it contentment, pleasure or joy. But could pursuing it leave us sad instead? Nicola Davis explores the science and psychology of happiness

Jul 20 2018

28mins

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Science weekly: can we cure Alzheimer's?

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Alzheimer’s disease affects millions of people worldwide. But despite decades of research costing hundreds of millions of dollars, we have no cure. Why?

May 14 2017

27mins

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Tomorrow's technology: from asteroid mining to programmable matter – Science Weekly podcast

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Ian Sample looks to the future and asks what might the technologies of tomorrow look like? And how might they change our world?

Nov 15 2017

30mins

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Is graphene really worth the hype – science weekly

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Nicola Davis investigates what makes graphene the ‘wonder material’ and whether it can bring commercial success to the UK

May 21 2017

30mins

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Questioning AI: what are the key research challenges? – Science Weekly podcast

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In the first episode of our Questioning Artificial Intelligence mini-series, Ian Sample explores some of the key hurdles for machine learning, including reasoning and social intelligence

Jan 04 2018

35mins

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From zero to infinity: a brief history of counting – Science Weekly podcast

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Nicola Davis is joined by mathematician Marcus du Sautoy to explore zero, infinity and everything in between

Oct 04 2017

28mins

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Huntington's disease: the price paid for our big brains? – Science Weekly podcast

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This degenerative illness has a few genetic quirks which scientists believe could cause secondary health benefits. Emerging research suggests that people with Huntington’s are less sickly, don’t get cancer as often and even have more brain cells. Hannah Devlin investigates.

Aug 24 2018

26mins

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Biomimicry: Does nature do it better?

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In this special collaboration between the Guardian’s Science Weekly and Chips with Everything podcasts, we explore why it’s so hard to mimic nature

Aug 10 2018

24mins

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Is it possible to enhance and rewire the adult brain? – Science Weekly podcast

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Nicola Davis asks: can we increase the window of brain plasticity in the later stages of life? And what do we know about the implications of doing so?

Mar 09 2018

25mins

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Did a supervolcano cause the dinosaurs' demise? – Science Weekly podcast

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Some scientists are beginning to question whether it really was an asteroid impact that led to the dinosaurs’ extinction – instead, they think it may have been a supervolcano in India. Graihagh Jackson investigates

Jan 04 2019

25mins

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Culture and the mind: a new theory of human intelligence – Science Weekly podcast

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What role might culture play in intelligence? And how does human culture differ from culture found in other animals? Nicola Davis explores our evolutionary history

Feb 07 2018

40mins

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Questioning AI: what kind of intelligence will we create? – Science Weekly podcast

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In the second episode of this mini-series, Ian Sample asks if human-level intelligence is what we should be aiming for. And can we replicate something we can’t even define?

Jan 10 2018

38mins

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Erica answers: responses from an android - Science Weekly podcast

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Erica - the world’s ‘most beautiful and intelligent’ android - responds to people’s questions about her memories, superintelligence, and the future of humanity

May 03 2017

16mins

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Heatwaves: the next silent killer? - Science Weekly podcast

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Heatwaves have ravaged much of the northern hemisphere, causing wildfires, destruction and death. Some are blaming heat stress for an increase in chronic kidney disease in Central America. Graihagh Jackson investigates the causes and health effects of heatwaves

Aug 17 2018

21mins

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The grey zone: reaching out to patients with disorders of consciousness

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In this edition of Science Weekly, Ian Sample explores whether it is possible to communicate with those in a ‘vegetative’ state – and what are the ethical and legal ramifications?

Sep 06 2017

26mins

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Alternative medicine and its sceptics – Science Weekly podcast

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This week, Hannah Devlin asks: what are sceptics of alternative medicine saying about its rise? And what can their thoughts tell us about how the scientific sceptic movement is approaching the conversation?

Apr 13 2018

30mins

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A Neuroscientist Explains: where perception ends and hallucination begins

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When it comes to perceiving the world around us, how much of it is due to ‘bottom-up’ sensory data and how much comes from the ‘top-down’ predictions we make? Most importantly; how can the delicate dance between the two lead to hallucinations?

Apr 02 2018

37mins

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Vitamania: should we all be popping vitamin pills? – Science Weekly podcast

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With almost half of British adults taking a daily vitamin, Graihagh Jackson and guests examine our love of supplements - including recent announcments about fortifying flour with folic acid. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Mar 22 2019

21mins

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Pioneering Ketamine treatments: alcohol dependency – Science Weekly podcast

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Ketamine might sound like an unlikely candidate for treating addiction and depression. But a growing number of scientists believe the drug could help. Over the next two episodes of Science Weekly, Hannah Devlin speaks to two experts who are using ketamine in their work in very different ways. In this episode, we’re focusing on alcohol dependency and the findings that a single dose of Ketamine could positively impact on heavy drinkers. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Dec 06 2019

19mins

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Amy Dickman on her life of big cat conservation - Science Weekly podcast

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Dr Amy Dickman is an internationally renowned conservation biologist. She’s dedicated her life to saving big cats in the wild, working in Africa for over 20 years on carnivore ecology and how to resolve human-wildlife conflict. Amy talks to Nicola Davis about her career trying to bring a halt to the decline in big cat populations, including the role that trophy hunting might play. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Nov 29 2019

23mins

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Up early or lying in: why we need different amounts of sleep – Science Weekly podcast

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Requiring minimal amounts of sleep is sometimes seen as a badge of honour. But for many of us, being able to actually function is a different matter altogether. So why is it that some people seem to need more or less sleep? And what are some of the ramifications if we don’t get enough? Hannah Devlin speaks to two experts whose work is bringing new understanding to our sleeping behaviours. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Nov 22 2019

17mins

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Callum Roberts on a life spent diving on coral reefs – Science Weekly podcast

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Callum Roberts is a British oceanographer, author and one of the world’s leading marine biologists. Sitting down with Ian Sample, Callum talks about his journey into exploring marine habitats, his subsequent work observing the world’s coral reefs and how, despite the urgent threat posed to the majority of these densely populated habitats, he still maintains an almost unswerving optimism for the future of his profession and of coral reefs in general. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Nov 15 2019

22mins

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Taking on Eysenck: one man's mission to challenge a giant of psychology – Science Weekly podcast

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In 1992, Anthony Pelosi voiced concerns in the British Medical Journal about controversial findings from Hans Eysenck – one of the most influential British psychologists of all time – and German researcher Ronald Grossarth-Maticek. Those findings claimed personality played a bigger part in people’s chances of dying from cancer or heart disease than smoking. Almost three decades later, Eysenck’s institution have recommended these studies be retracted from academic journals. Hannah Devlin speaks to Pelosi about the twists and turns in his ultimately successful journey. And to the Guardian’s health editor, Sarah Boseley, about how revelations from tobacco industry documents played a crucial role. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Nov 08 2019

28mins

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Artificial wombs and the promise for premature babies - Science Weekly podcast

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In October, a team of Dutch researchers were awarded a grant of €2.9m to develop a working prototype of an artificial womb for use in the clinic. But they are not the only ones working on this kind of technology. In 2017, a team in Philadelphia created the ‘biobag’, which could sustain premature lambs. Both teams hope their artificial wombs could allow premature babies to continue to develop as they would in a real womb, improving their chance of survival. Nicola Davis asks: What does current neonatal intensive care look like? Would an artificial womb really offer benefits? And what ethical and legal implications could arise if the technology is pursued?. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Nov 01 2019

31mins

Play

Inside the mind of the bullshitter: Science Weekly podcast

Podcast cover
Read more
In 1986, philosopher Harry G Frankfurt wrote: “One of the most salient features of our culture is that there is so much bullshit.” This was the opening line of his seminal essay (later a book), On Bullshit, in which Frankfurt put forward his theory on the subject. Three decades later, psychologists are finally getting to grips with what might be going on in the minds of those who dabble in the dark arts of BS. Ian Sample asks two such psychologists what we can do to fight back. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Oct 25 2019

29mins

Play

Stuart Russell on why now is the time to start thinking about superintelligent AI - Science Weekly podcast

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Prof Stuart Russell wrote the book on artificial intelligence. Literally. But that was back in 1995, when the next few decades of AI were uncertain, and, according to him, distinctly less threatening. Sitting down with Ian Sample, Russell talks about his latest book, Human Compatible, which warns of a dystopian future in which humans are outsmarted by machines. But how did we get here? And what can we do to make sure these machines benefit humankind?. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Oct 18 2019

24mins

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The dangers of DIY genetic testing – Science Weekly podcast

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Whether for ancestry or health, millions of us are choosing to have our genetic fingerprints analysed by using direct-to-consumer kits from private companies. But can the results of these tests be trusted in a clinical setting? Senior doctors have called for a crackdown on home genetic-testing kits and this week, Hannah Devlin finds out why. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Oct 11 2019

28mins

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Cleaning up our air – Science Weekly podcast

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An estimated 7 million people die every year from exposure to polluted air. Nicola Davis looks at the science behind air pollution and at the policies to tackle it. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Oct 04 2019

33mins

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The menopause: a new treatment for hot flushes? – Science Weekly podcast

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Despite being something that will affect half the world’s population, the menopause, and how it can lead to things such as hot flushes, has historically been a bit of a ‘black box’ for scientists. But thanks to new insights from animal research, a much-needed alternative to hormone replacement therapy could be just around the corner. Hannah Devlin investigates. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Sep 27 2019

21mins

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'Nature is quantum from the start': Sean Carroll, many worlds, and a new theory of spacetime – Science Weekly podcast

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Ian Sample speaks to the theoretical physicist Sean Carroll about his mission to demystify quantum mechanics. It won’t be easy, though, as Carroll’s favoured interpretation of this fundamental theory – the ‘many worlds’ interpretation – results in a possibly infinite number of parallel universes. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Sep 20 2019

26mins

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How to find life beyond Earth - Science Weekly podcast

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As scientists at University College London announce the discovery of water in the atmosphere of a potentially habitable ‘super Earth’, Ian Sample explores our prospects for finding life beyond our own planet. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Sep 13 2019

35mins

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How to stop MS in its tracks – Science Weekly podcast

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Ian Sample visits Professor Richard Reynolds at the MS Society tissue bank to hear how research on brains of patients who died with multiple sclerosis is leading to novel insights and new treatments. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Sep 06 2019

35mins

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Soundscape ecology with Bernie Krause - Science Weekly podcast

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Do you know what noise a hungry sea anemone makes? Soundscape ecologist Bernie Krause does. Armed with over 5,000 hours of recordings, he takes Ian Sample on a journey through the natural world and demonstrates why sound is a powerful tool for conservation First broadcast on 15 June 2018. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Aug 30 2019

26mins

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Oceans of Noise: Episode Three – Science Weekly

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During our summer break, we’re revisiting the archives. Today, Wildlife recordist Chris Watson concludes this three-part journey into the sonic environment of the ocean, celebrating the sounds and songs of marine life and investigating the threat of noise pollution First released: 03/05/2019. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Aug 23 2019

36mins

Play

Oceans of Noise: Episode Two – Science Weekly podcast

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During our summer break, we’re revisiting the archives. Today, Wildlife recordist Chris Watson presents the second instalment of a three-part journey into the sonic environment of the ocean, celebrating the sounds and songs of marine life and investigating the threat of noise pollution First released: 03/05/2019. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Aug 16 2019

28mins

Play

Oceans of Noise: Episode One – Science Weekly podcast

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During our summer break, we’re revisiting the archives. Today, Wildlife recordist Chris Watson begins a three-part journey into the sonic environment of the ocean, celebrating the sounds and songs of marine life and investigating the threat of noise pollution First released: 03/05/2019. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Aug 09 2019

34mins

Play

The psychology of climate science denial – Science Weekly podcast

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We revisit the archive as Ian Sample looks at why some people continue to deny anthropogenic global heating, despite the scientific evidence. Could better communication be the key? And what tips can scientists and journalists take from political campaigns?. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Aug 02 2019

35mins

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The interplay between gender and autism spectrum disorder – Science Weekly podcast

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The Science Weekly team are taking a bit of a break so we’ll be revisiting some of our favourite shows from the archive. Including this one from 2017, when Nicola Davis looked at why so many women with autism are misdiagnosed and how this issue resonates with broader ideas of neurodiversity. We also hear from a listener about how this episode affected her life.. Help support our independent journalism at theguardian.com/sciencepod

Jul 26 2019

29mins

Play