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Innovation Hub

PRI

Innovation Hub looks at how to reinvent our world – from medicine to education, relationships to time management. Great thinkers and great ideas, designed to make your life better.

Innovation Hub looks at how to reinvent our world – from medicine to education, relationships to time management. Great thinkers and great ideas, designed to make your life better.

Location:

Boston, MA

Networks:

PRI

WGBH

PRX

Description:

Innovation Hub looks at how to reinvent our world – from medicine to education, relationships to time management. Great thinkers and great ideas, designed to make your life better.

Language:

English


Episodes

The Invisible Future of American Jobs

1/22/2021
Over the last several decades, manufacturing jobs in the U.S. have withered. Meanwhile, health care has become the fastest growing job sector in the country, and it’s been on top for years. According to Gabriel Winant, a historian at the University of Chicago, and author of “The Next Shift: The Fall of Industry and the Rise of Health Care in Rust Belt America,” not only are those two opposing trends related, but there are also some serious consequences to the connection.

Duration:00:36:00

Look At This Photograph

1/22/2021
From Mathew Brady’s Civil War photographs, to some of the first images of Earth in space, photography has shaped the way we see ourselves. Which means that when photographic technology changes and progresses, it can really shift our self-image. Ainissa Ramirez is a scientist and the author of The Alchemy of Us: How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another, and she was previously on Innovation Hub to talk about how materials science altered the way we think about time. Now, she tells the...

Duration:00:14:22

The Man Who Invented 24-Hour News

1/15/2021
It might be difficult to remember now, but there was a time when the news wasn’t 24/7. There were morning and evening editions of the paper; the nightly news was, well, nightly; radio offered updates from time to time. But there’s a whole lot of difference between that world and today’s never-stop cavalcade of heartbreak, tragedy, excitement, and despair. And one of the biggest dividing lines between those two realities was the creation of CNN. Journalist Lisa Napoli is the author of “Up...

Duration:00:38:10

A Watch Named Arnold

1/15/2021
It might be hard to believe, but there was a time when time wasn’t as exact as it is now. When people would come over on “Tuesday” rather than “Tuesday at exactly 2:30.” Ainissa Ramirez is a scientist and author of The Alchemy of Us How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another, and she tells the story of how Materials Science made time so important. Strangely enough, it involves a woman who sold time, using a watch named Arnold.

Duration:00:11:41

How the 1% Affect You

1/8/2021
Cities and states have lost billions of dollars in combined tax revenues during the economic downturn, caused by the coronavirus pandemic. A change that the Trump administration made to the tax code a few years ago, has also diminished some local coffers, because it has caused a slice of super-wealthy residents in high-tax states such as California and New York to move to places with lower taxes, like Florida and Texas. With rising economic inequality, the exodus of even a fraction of the...

Duration:00:35:51

The Stories that Drive the Stock Market

1/8/2021
The way we understand the eras we live through — from world wars, to the rise of the internet in the 2000s, to the pandemic of today — also directly impacts the economy. That’s according to Robert Shiller, a winner of the 2013 Nobel Prize in economics, a professor of economics at Yale, and the author of “Narrative Economics: How Stories Go Viral and Drive Major Economic Events.” He argues that the big events we experience and our perception of them shape the stock market in serious ways,...

Duration:00:14:45

What You (Don’t) Know About George Washington

1/1/2021
He’s on our money, our capital is named after him and he’s even in our extremely weird car ads. But how much do you really know about statesman, general, farmer, slave master, husband, stepfather, and first President of the United States George Washington? According to Alexis Coe, author of You Never Forget Your First: A Biography of George Washington, probably not as much as you might think. Coe walks us through the surprising life of the man on the one dollar bill.

Duration:00:25:43

Makings of Modern Conservatism

1/1/2021
In the 1930s, America experienced the Great Depression, the New Deal, and leadership from both Herbert Hoover and Franklin Roosevelt. California, meanwhile, witnessed a serious shift in the Republican Party - a shift that would impact the entire country for decades to come. Kathryn Olmsted, professor of history at the University of California Davis and author of Right Out of California: The 1930s and the Big Business Roots of Modern Conservatism, says that all sorts of factors came together...

Duration:00:24:44

Public Schools, Education, and The Coronavirus

12/25/2020
In the spring, more than 50 million K-12 students were hurriedly sent home as the nation’s public schools shut down because of the coronavirus pandemic. Some of those students have returned to their classrooms now, for full or partial in-person instruction, while others have continued with distance learning or quit public school systems altogether. Paul Reville, a professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and Pedro Noguera, dean of the University of Southern California Rossier...

Duration:00:49:56

The Secret Life of the Supermarket

12/18/2020
There was a moment in early 2020 when life narrowed and the grocery store became a lifeline — in more ways than one. It was the source of breakfast, lunch and dinner, of course. But those lines emerging from sliding glass doors and wrapping around the block? For a while, they were as close to a social life as we could get, one of our last connections to the outside world. And, when certain items were in short supply in the early days of the pandemic, we were forced to think a lot more about...

Duration:00:50:24

The Case for Rapid Tests

12/11/2020
If you have a cough or a fever nowadays, you know exactly what to do: go to the doctor, get a COVID test, and quarantine so you can stop the spread. But we also know that plenty of people contract COVID-19 and transmit it before they know they have it — and some people never even realize that they are contagious at all. So, when it comes to asymptomatic carriers, how do you shut down the line of transmission? According to Dr. Michael Mina, an epidemiologist and immunologist at Harvard...

Duration:00:32:43

The Devastating Overlap of Obesity and COVID-19

12/11/2020
When we last spoke with Dariush Mozaffarian, dean of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, about COVID-19 and obesity back in June, the pandemic was still relatively new. We didn’t know how long it would take to get a vaccine, how many would be affected or who would struggle the most. Mozaffarian was just beginning to sift through some of the early hospitalization data, and he noticed one risk factor that seemed to be particularly risky: obesity. Now, with...

Duration:00:18:19

Come Fly With Me - Reinventing Travel After COVID

12/4/2020
The pandemic has been a catastrophe for tourism and travel, upending an almost $9 trillion industry that once accounted for approximately 330 million jobs around the world. And there continues to be great uncertainty about what the future holds. When will everyone feel safe to fly again? When we do, where will we want to go, and will we be able to afford it? The road to recovery for American leisure and business travel will be long and complicated, according to Henry Harteveldt, an industry...

Duration:00:50:00

Strike While the Hand is Hot

11/27/2020
You might not think that a simulation meant for kids could change how something plays out in real life, but in the 1990s, the arcade game NBA Jam did exactly that. One feature of the game allowed players to be “on fire.” The more a player scored, the higher chance he or she had of scoring again. Fast forward to today and you can’t escape the concept of a hot streak, or a “hot hand”' as it’s called in basketball. Athletes swear by it, even refusing to touch another player’s “hot” hand. But...

Duration:00:32:36

Designing for Humans

11/27/2020
From our smartphones to our bicycles, the user experience provided by manufactured products has an enormous impact on our lives. Down to the smallest details, designers often puzzle over how to best align a product with the demands of the customer. But that wasn’t always the approach, and Cliff Kuang, author of User Friendly: How the Hidden Rules of Design Are Changing the Way We Live, Work, and Play, explains how this revolution of design has taken hold and dramatically changed our patterns...

Duration:00:17:18

Does the Office Have a Future?

11/20/2020
In offices around the country, mail has piled up. Plants have died. Coffee cups sit unwashed, with a ring of old espresso cemented to the bottom. In some buildings, the lights have been left on since March — and who knows when someone will be back to turn them off. According to Stanford economist Nicholas Bloom, we’re in the middle of “a structural, seismic shift” in the workplace. The majority of employees booted out of the office earlier this year don’t want to come back, says Liz...

Duration:00:30:31

Fighting a Mental Health Pandemic

11/20/2020
In the past few months, a pandemic of mental health has shadowed COVID-19. Across the country, cases of depression, anxiety, alcoholism and domestic violence have been on the rise — intensifying an existing shortage of mental health care providers. With shutdowns and social distancing guidelines, access to therapy has also changed dramatically, with a forced transition to online sessions. This switch to telepsychiatry is a big move but, according to Dr. Peter Yellowlees, a psychiatry...

Duration:00:20:41

How the West Came to Dominate Our Brains

11/13/2020
About 1500 years ago, the world was a very different place; Pope Gregory was spreading Catholicism far and wide, a plague was running rampant, and some dominoes were about to start falling. The end of that cascade would end up in a world where a certain group of people started to think quite differently from those who had come before them. Their brains began to change, the societies they built thrived and they grew so influential and culturally dominant that their way of thinking permeated...

Duration:00:51:08

Public Education in the Age of COVID and Beyond

11/6/2020
In the spring, more than 50 million K-12 students were hurriedly sent home as the nation’s public schools shut down because of the coronavirus pandemic. Some of those students have returned to their classrooms now, for full or partial in-person instruction, while others have continued with distance learning or quit public school systems altogether. Paul Reville, a professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and Pedro Noguera, dean of the University of Southern California Rossier...

Duration:00:50:25

How Big Tech is Pushing Artists Out of Work

10/30/2020
The pandemic has made life as an artist hard — real hard. Museums and studios have closed, live shows have been canceled and concerts have been pushed online. But according to William Deresiewicz, this is just the most recent act in a long, profound shift in the arts. Deresiewicz, a former English professor at Yale University and author of “The Death of the Artist: How Creators Are Struggling to Survive in the Age of Billionaires and Big Tech,” says the digital age has devastated and...

Duration:00:22:51