VOTE The Best Podcasts for Smart People  

Jacob Shelton
387 votes 221 voters 2.8k views 37 items Follow Embed
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Thank goodness for whoever invented podcasts. Not only do they help people pass the time at work, but the best ones help us learn something. This list covers the best podcasts for smart people, no matter what subject you might be interested in. Thanks to the democratization of recording equipment, all someone needs to do to make a podcast is buy a microphone and start talking. While it's great to get all those different perspectives out in the world, if you want to learn something, you've got to choose the listen to the right voices. Whether you want to learn Chinese or bone up on economic policy, there’s a podcast for you.

Whether it's linguistics to philosophy, just about everyone has their favorite field of study. On this list of smart podcasts, you'll find plenty of ways to get through your next morning in traffic or boring road trip. From politics and science to book reviews and intellectual takes on pop culture, this list has you covered for whatever you want to listen to. Get your earbuds ready and check out this list of podcasts that smart people listen to.

Vote up your favorite podcasts that feed your brain, and if your favorite smart podcasts aren't on the list, then add them yourself, you smarty-pants.
list ordered by

1
+ - 32 9
Hardcore History is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Hardcore History

The 20 Most Epic Wedding FAILs of All Time The Best Howard Stern News Pranks Performed by Captain Janks

2
+ - 31 9
This American Life is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
This American Life

3
+ - 28 7
RadioLab is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People

4
+ - 20 3
Freakonomics is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Freakonomics

5
+ - 23 6
Stuff You Should Know is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People

6
+ - 11 3
Quirks and Quarks is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Quirks and Quarks

7
+ - 13 5
Ted Radio Hour is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Ted Radio Hour

8
+ - 7 3
Planet Money: NPR is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Planet Money: NPR

9
+ - 10 7
The Dork Forest is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
The Dork Forest

10
+ - 8 5
Grammar Girl: Quick and Dirty ... is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Grammar Girl: Quick and Dirty Tips

11
+ - 4 2
Fresh Air is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Fresh Air

12
+ - 3 1
Revisionist History is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Revisionist History A podcast from Malcolm Gladwell and Panoply Media. Revisionist History goes back and reinterprets something from the past: an event, a person, an idea. Something overlooked. Something misunderstood.

13
+ - 3 1
More Perfect is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
More Perfect More Perfect, dives into the rarefied world of the Supreme Court to explain how cases deliberated inside hallowed halls affect lives far away from the bench.

14
+ - 7 6
Meditate This is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Meditate This

15
+ - 6 5
Between The Covers is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Between The Covers

Professional Wrestlers Who Died Young 50 Incredible Pictures That Might Teach You Something

16
+ - 3 2
Note to Self is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Note to Self

17
+ - 2 1
Invisibilia is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Invisibilia Invisibilia (from NPR) is about the invisible forces that control human behavior – ideas, beliefs, assumptions and emotions. 

18
+ - 2 1
Good Job, Brain! is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Good Job, Brain!

19
+ - 7 7
The Dinner Party Download is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
The Dinner Party Download

20
+ - 6 6
NYTimes Book Review is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
NYTimes Book Review

21
+ - 3 3
The Writer's Almanac is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
The Writer's Almanac

22
+ - 2 2
The Road Podcast With Jt Haber... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
The Road Podcast With Jt Habersaat

23
+ - 2 2
Abe Lincoln's Top Hat is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Abe Lincoln's Top Hat

24
+ - 2 2
Important Chinese Things with ... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Important Chinese Things with Jenny Zhu

25
+ - 2 2
The Ranker Podcast is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
The Ranker Podcast

26
+ - 1 1
Science Vs is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Science Vs The show that pits facts against everything else, hosted by Wendy Zukerman.

27
+ - 2 3
Books on the Nightstand is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Books on the Nightstand

28
+ - 1 2
Science... Sort Of is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Science... Sort Of

29
+ - 1 2
The Majority Report is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
The Majority Report

The Top 10 Untrue Medical Myths 25 Things You Should Probably Stop Blaming on Millennials

30
+ - 0 1
KCRW's The Treatment is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
KCRW's The Treatment

31
+ - 0 1
Radiotonic is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Radiotonic

32
+ - 3 5
Coffee Break French is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Coffee Break French

33
+ - 3 5
Caustic Soda is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Caustic Soda

34
+ - 3 5
Curious City is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Curious City

35
+ - 0 3
More Or Less: Behind the Stats is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
More Or Less: Behind the Stats

36
+ - 0 3
Slacking Ambition is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Slacking Ambition

37
+ - 0 5
Slate's Audio Book Club is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Podcasts for Smart People
Slate's Audio Book Club