Could insects go extinct in one hundred years? Read more
Could insects go extinct in one hundred years?
Why did the UK have such a bad Covid-19 epidemic?
Was it bad decision-making, bad advice, or bad luck?
Why Trump is wrong about the USA’s coronavirus case comeback
Are cases really rising in the US or are they just testing more? Tim digs into the data.
Sweden’s lockdown lite
Sweden stayed open during the pandemic – how well did it work?
Covid misconceptions and US deaths
How many of us believe the myths about coronavirus?
Data in the time of cholera
A journey back to the birth of epidemiology
Covid in Africa
Do we have enough data to know what’s happening on the continent?
Melting Antarctic ice
If all the ice in Antarctica melted, would global sea levels rise by 70 metres?
Hawaiian Pizza, obesity and a second wave?
Covid-19 cases are rising in the UK - is it a sign of a second wave of the virus?
Belarus’ contested election
Tim Harford looks at the numbers behind the widely questioned election result
A-level algorithms, poker and buses
We unpick the A-level algoshambles and discover what poker teaches us about statistics.
Covid plasma therapy
Claims about a Covid-19 treatment, breast cancer screening, and 18th century sex workers.
Schools and coronavirus, test and trace, maths and reality
Evidence on Covid-19 risks in schools, data on contact tracing, and a philosophical query.
Covid cases rising, a guide to life’s risks, and racing jelly-fish
How worrying is the UK’s jump in cases? Plus balancing risks and the speed of jelly-fish.
Covid testing capacity, refugee numbers, and mascara
Confusing claims on lab capacity, the UK’s record on asylum, and the volume of eyelashes.
The magical maths of pool testing
Could pool testing hold the key to ramping up Covid-19 testing?
Covid curve queried, false positives, and the Queen’s head
How fast are coronavirus cases doubling? Plus testing confusion and a royal face-off.
“Record” Covid cases, Trump on the death count, and ant pheromones
Case counts in perspective, a suspect stat from the US, and life lessons from insects.
Spreadsheet snafu, ‘Long Covid’ quantified, and the birth of probability
Missing coronavirus case data, long-term symptoms, and a big mathematical moment.
A short history of probability
Gamblers, millionaires and annuities
Auction Theory - Paul Milgrom and Robert Wilson
This year’s Nobel memorial prize winners for economics and their work on auction theory.
US election: facts or fiction
Tim Harford hears about the sheer volume of false claims made in the campaign.
Asymptomatic Covid19 Cases
How many Covid19 cases are truly asymptomatic?
How deadly is Covid 19?
Why there isn’t one single death rate.
How much protection will a new Covid 19 vaccine give?
Inviting Covid for Dinner
If you go to a gathering of 25 people, what are the chances one of you has coronavirus?
Tracking Covid 19
Which countries are doing well at keeping track of the virus? And which are not?
Vaccines: how safe and who gets it?
Is it too soon to approve a vaccine for use? Plus choosing who goes first.
QAnon: Child runaways and trafficking numbers debunked
Tackling statistics spread by conspiracy theorists.
The economics of a Covid Christmas
What to consider when buying presents this year
Numbers of the year: Part one
Tim Harford showcases statistics from 2020
Numbers of the year: Part two
Ants and Algorithms
David Sumpter describes the algorithms ruling the world
How effective is one dose of the vaccine?
Is the first dose of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine 52% or 90% effective?
Will the vaccine bring back normal life? GDP and Fishing
If we vaccinate the top four priority groups by February, how much will things change?
Counting Covid’s impact on GDP
Does GDP tell us whose economies have suffered most during Covid?
Deaths at home, supermarket infections and the Cobra effect
Where are people catching Covid-19?
Deaths at Home, Supermarket Infections and the Cobra Effect
The Rapid Test Row
The huge row among scientists about rapid coronavirus tests.
Teachers, Test & Trace and Butterflies
Are teachers more at risk from Covid-19?
Glasgow vs Rwanda
Could life expectancy in some parts of Glasgow be worse than in Rwanda?
Brexit exports, cladding and are 1 in 5 disabled?
Are exports to the EU down since Brexit? Plus removing flammable building cladding.
How much Covid in the World?
Counting all the virus particles in every human on the planet.
Comparing death counts, Lock Down drinking and Long Covid
Is the UK’s Covid 19 death count among the worst in the world? Plus are we drinking more?
Covid 19 death count: which countries are faring worst?
Tim Harford finds out if we can trust international comparisons with the available data.
Why are US Covid cases falling?
From herd immunity to the weather, Tim Harford explores the theories.
Sainthood and Cup draws
Your chances of becoming a saint, plus football odds.
The truth about obesity and Covid 19
Are countries with higher obesity rates suffering from more deaths?
Deciding when to suspend a vaccine
Weighing up the risk of unproven side effects with stopping Covid 19.
In praise of Covid Data
How we came to expect dashboards full of statistics.
Too fast for Minecraft?
Gamers raise suspicions over speed run times - are they right?
Clot risks: The Pill versus the vaccine
AstraZeneca’s clot controversy turns attention on the contraceptive pill.
How many swimming pools full of vaccine do we need?
Adding together the doses for everyone on the planet.
Will 2021 have more Covid deaths than 2020?
We ask if this year’s global death toll will surpass 1.8 million.
Bayes: the clergyman whose maths changed the world
How an obscure theory came into fashion.
Finding Mexico City’s real death toll
How two amateur data detectives revealed the pandemic’s impact.
Explaining maths without Numbers
Tim Harford speaks to mathematician Milo Beckman about the beauty of maths.
The medical trial that proved Trump wrong
The Recovery Trial identified drugs that did and did not help save lives.
Wales jab success, Eurovision and living with your parents
How to vaccinate a country quickly, plus the UK’s singing contest woes.
The Seaspiracy “virtually empty ocean” claim
Why it’s unlikely our oceans will be virtually empty by 2048.
Bolton vaccines, Yorkshire versus Scotland and the average gamer
Were tens of thousands of people getting their jab in Bolton every single day?
Third wave fears, smart motorways and bra sizes
Should we worry about Covid cases rising? Plus are smart motorways safe?
The doubling of life-expectancy
The story of how data helped extend our lives
Covid deaths, outdoor swimming and care homes
The global death toll has reached a grim milestone. Plus the UK’s low ranking waters.
The origins of Covid
How similar are the Covid strains?
Delta cases, blue tits and that one-in-two cancer claim
Should we worry about the Delta variant? Plus how much do blue tits eat?
Maths and the Mayflower
Are there really 35 million descendants of the Mayflower alive today?
Scotland cases, flood risk and taxing the poor
Covid 19 cases are on the rise in Scotland, plus will your town be under water by 2030?
Is Ivermectin a Covid ‘wonder drug’?
What do we know about the efficacy of Ivermectin as a treatment for Covid-19?
Are there 40 million Nigerians on Twitter?
Recent reports have claimed that Nigeria has 40 million Twitter users – but is this true?
The Freedom Day Gamble
Tim Harford and the team try to work out how long Covid cases will continue to rise.
The Rise of Delta
Where’s this new Variant spreading and what can be done to stop it?
Breaking Climate Records
The odds and probability behind record-breaking temperatures
Jab fears explained: a base rate fallacy
Why increasing Covid infections amongst the vaccinated isn’t necessarily bad news
How good were the performances at the Tokyo Olympics?
What can the data tell us about the quality of the Covid hit games?
The extraordinary life of Robert Moses
The life of mathematics educator and civil rights organiser, Dr Robert Moses
Reason, numbers and Mr Spock
What role do numbers play in helping us think more rationally?
Covid, HGV driver shortages and protest costs
Has Brexit caused a fall in lorry drivers? Plus policing Extinction Rebellion
The Bill for Afghanistan
Did the war in Afghanistan cost the US $2 trillion?
Vaccine waning, hot dogs and Afghanistan
How worried should we be about antibodies? Plus food that shortens life.
Death, Tax and Dishwashers
Why is estimating the number of unvaccinated people so tricky? And how deadly is 2021?
How many holes are there in a drinking straw?
Tim Harford talks to Jordan Ellenberg about the pandemic, geometry and drinking straws.
Covid trends, face mask use, and the universal credit cut
A coronavirus check-in, our daily mask use measured, and the universal credit cut.
Is it easy being green?
Expensive electricity, inadequate insulation, and a tale of tumbling trees.
The Gender Pay Gap
Can Machiavelli help women get a better deal in the workplace?
Twenty years of More or Less
A look back at our origins, plus the usual mix of numerical nous and statistical savvy.
Bonus episode: the first ever More or Less
A chat with More or Less's founding producer and presenter plus the first episode in full
The prize-winning economics of migration and the minimum wage
A look at the work of this year’s winners of the most prestigious prize in economics.
The numbers behind Squid Game
Could you survive a round in Squid Game, and how many have watched it?
The art of counting
Tim Harford talks to author Deborah Stone about her book which explores counting.
Same data, opposite results. Can we trust research?
Why the same data can produce different conclusions.
The carbon cost of breakfast at COP26
Can a vegan croissant really be worse for the environment than a bacon roll?
A TikTok tale
How a well-meaning TikTok disrupted 4,600 studies
Simpson’s Paradox: How to make vaccinated death figures misleading
A tricky statistical phenomenon at play.
Does wearing a mask halve your chances of getting Covid-19?
Is it true wearing a mask reduces Covid-19 incidence by 53%?
Does catching covid give you more immunity than being vaccinated?
Infection vs injection: Could prior infection provide 27 times more protection?
The psychological economics of gift giving
How to buy gifts people actually want.
Numbers of 2021
The most significant numbers of the year
Will the population of Nigeria be larger than Europe’s?
Will Nigeria’s population really reach 600million?
How much plastic is in the Ocean and can Mr Beast make a difference?
Looking at Mark Rober and Mr Beast’s plastics pledge.
Omicron, pandemic birth rates and boosters
An Omicron update, pandemic birth rates and the booster drive.