Robert Krulwich

Robert Krulwich works on radio, podcasts, video, the blogosphere. He has been called "the most inventive network reporter in television" by TV Guide.

Krulwich is a Science Correspondent for NPR. His NPR blog, "Krulwich Wonders" features drawings, cartoons and videos that illustrate hard-to-see concepts in science.

He is the co-host of Radiolab, a nationally distributed radio/podcast series that explores new developments in science for people who are curious but not usually drawn to science shows. "There's nothing like it on the radio," says Ira Glass of This American Life, "It's a act of crazy genius." Radiolab won a Peabody Award in 2011.

His specialty is explaining complex subjects, science, technology, economics, in a style that is clear, compelling and entertaining. On television he has explored the structure of DNA using a banana; on radio he created an Italian opera, "Ratto Interesso" to explain how the Federal Reserve regulates interest rates; he has pioneered the use of new animation on ABC's Nightline and World News Tonight.

For 22 years, Krulwich was a science, economics, general assignment and foreign correspondent at ABC and CBS News.

He won Emmy awards for a cultural history of the Barbie doll, for a Frontline investigation of computers and privacy, a George Polk and Emmy for a look at the Savings & Loan bailout online advertising and the 2010 Essay Prize from the Iowa Writers' Workshop.

Krulwich earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from Oberlin College and a law degree from Columbia University.

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Krulwich Wonders...
8:32 pm
Sun February 23, 2014

You're The Last. The Very Last One. Now What Happens?

John James Audubon University of Pittsburgh/ Wikimedia Commons

Originally published on Wed February 12, 2014 8:46 pm

What happens if you are the last (the very, very last) of your species and you die — and humans notice?

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Krulwich Wonders...
1:11 am
Sun February 23, 2014

The Right Way To Hug A Lion

Courtesy of Connie Sun

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 7:16 pm

There are different ways to think about animals. One way is to imagine them totally separate, not attaching to us, ever. "They are not brethren," wrote the great naturalist Henry Beston, "they are not underlings. They are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time." Animals and people, Beston thought, live in their own worlds while sharing the same streets, meadows, skies, homes. We mingle, but the gap between us is not crossable.

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Krulwich Wonders...
12:22 am
Sun February 23, 2014

Big Fish Stories Getting Littler

Courtesy of Monroe County Public Library

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 2:26 pm

They came, they fished, then snap! They posed. Right in front of their Big Catch — and thereby hangs a tale.

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Krulwich Wonders...
10:55 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Even Dead, Really Nasty Pets Are Still ... Um ... Trouble

 

Originally published on Tue February 4, 2014 10:36 am

The Inmans had a parrot. Grump (that was his name) was horrible, angry, scheming and nasty. But he was their parrot so they couldn't shoot him. Instead he lived in their house, soiled their mail, stole their fried chicken and, every so often, bit. Then, finally, he died.

Sort of.

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Krulwich Wonders...
10:44 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Can It Be? Pigeons, Geese And White-Tailed Deer Were Once Rare

Robert Krulwich NPR

Originally published on Mon February 3, 2014 3:47 pm

Go back 150 years and ask yourself, what was there a lot of?

We all know the answer ...

There were lots of buffalo, lots of passenger pigeons, lots of oysters. And then, poof! Hardly any. Or none ...

OK, let's flip the question: What were there precious few of 150 years ago, in a couple of cases almost to the point of extinction? The answer — believe it or not — is white-tailed deer, Canada geese and, arguably, ordinary pigeons.

I'm not kidding.

White Tailed Deer

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Krulwich Wonders...
9:54 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

A Hunk Of Planet Dissolves Before Our Eyes

exposurelabs YouTube

Originally published on Fri January 31, 2014 7:07 am

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Krulwich Wonders...
9:36 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

The Starling That Dared To Be Different

Dennis Hlynsky Vimeo

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 4:17 pm

You've seen them. We've all seen them.

Hundreds of starlings are sitting side by side by side — up on a power line yakking, preening — when all of a sudden, boom! Up they go, all of them. What happened? A sudden noise? A falcon in the neighborhood? Whatever it was, all the birds know. All the birds go. Starlings find safety in numbers. They like sameness. Exceptional starlings, I imagine, get eaten.

Well, that's what I used to think. Then, today, I saw my first unlike-all-the others starling. At least I think I did.

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Krulwich Wonders...
2:04 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

A Supersilly Super Bowl 'What If ... ?'

Bad british NFL commentary.
TheExplodingHeads YouTube

Originally published on Sat January 18, 2014 7:07 am

We're only a few Sundays shy of the big game, so here's a Super Bowl warm-up video, a "What if ... ?"

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Krulwich Wonders...
10:21 pm
Sat January 18, 2014

Thomas Jefferson Needs A Dead Moose Right Now To Defend America

Robert Krulwich NPR

Originally published on Thu January 16, 2014 7:51 pm

They were so young, the folks who invented America. James Madison, on July 4, 1776, was 25. James Monroe was 18, Alexander Hamilton, 21, Marquis de Lafayette, 18, Aaron Burr, 20, Betsy Ross, 24, Gilbert Stuart, 20. Ben Franklin, of course, was much older, grander and world famous. But he was the only one.

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Krulwich Wonders...
8:40 pm
Sat January 18, 2014

Who's Got A Pregnant Brain?

Robert Krulwich NPR

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 10:36 am

Imagine a couple of million years ago, a curious young alien from the planet Zantar — let's call him a grad student — lands on Earth, looks around and asks, "Who's the brainiest critter on this planet? Relative to body size, who's got the biggest brain?"

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