Trust Me, I'm An Expert

A podcast from The Conversation - on everything from the curious to the serious
Each month, The Conversation's editors bring you the most fascinating, surprising stories from the academic world. We're asking the experts to bust the myths, explain the science and put the news headlines into context. Join us as we take a deep dive into the big ideas driving our world.

Latest Episodes

Trust Me, I'm An Expert: what the huge HILDA survey reveals about your economic well-being, health and family life

What the huge HILDA survey reveals about your economic well-being, health and family life. The Conversation, CC BY53.6 MB (download)

On today's episode of the podcast, we’re talking about what one of Australia’s biggest longitudinal surveys and richest data sets, released today, says about how the nation is changing. And some of the trends may surprise you. The Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey tells the stories of the same group of Australians over the course of their lives. Starting in 2001, the…

1 Host: Roger Wilkins

Trust Me, I'm An Expert: What is sport worth?

The value of sport. The Conversation45.1 MB (download)

Even if you're no great sports fan, you may have noticed a lot of it around lately. There were the Winter Olympics and the Commonwealth Games, and now we're halfway through the 2018 FIFA World Cup. What isn't always so obvious is the money and the diplomatic power plays lingering just below the surface of every big sporting meet. But a growing body of academic research is examining those elements and…

4 Hosts: Andrew Hughes, Barbara Keys, Con Stavros and 1 other

Trust Me, I'm An Expert: The explainer episode

The explainer episode. The Conversation, CC BY67.5 MB (download)

Today on Trust Me, I'm An Expert, we're bringing you the explainer episode - where we ask researchers to unpack some truly tricky topics. The University of Queensland's James Sherlock explains what psychology can reveal about why people like pimple popping and ingrown hair removal videos. They're more popular online than you may realise, as a quick YouTube search for words like "pimple" or "blackhead…

3 Hosts: Andrew White, James M. Sherlock, and Raffaello Pantucci

Trust Me, I'm An Expert: 'Dancing out of depression' – how Syrian refugees are using exercise to improve mental health

Trust Me, I’m An Expert: how Syrian refugees are using exercise to improve mental health. The Conversation40.1 MB (download)

A growing body of research is drawing a link between mental and physical health – and the connection is much stronger than you might realise. Simon Rosenbaum, a senior research fellow in school psychiatry at UNSW, had been researching the role of exercise in mental health treatment for years when he teamed up with a colleague, Ruth Wells. Wells is a PhD candidate in clinical psychology at the University…

2 Hosts: Ruth Wells and Simon Rosenbaum

Trust Me, I'm An Expert: Brain-zapping, the curious case of the n-rays and other stories of evidence

Brain-zapping, the curious case of the n-rays and other stories of evidence. The Conversation, CC BY70.4 MB (download)

You've had an x-ray before but have you had an n-ray? Of course not, because they're not real. But people used to think they were. Scientists had shown they were. And the weird history of n-rays, explored in today's episode of Trust Me, I'm An Expert, tells us a lot about people's willingness to believe wrong information -- but also how well-designed studies can debunk myths, reveal important truths…

5 Hosts: Colleen Loo, Fiona Fidler, Laurent Billot and 2 other

Trust Me I'm An Expert: The science of pain

Trust Me I’m An Expert: The science of pain. The Conversation58.7 MB (download)

As many as one in five Australians suffer from chronic and recurring pain. But despite its prevalence, it's not always easy to find the help you need to manage it. "When I went through medical school, we had about one hour on acute pain. And the whole concept of chronic pain and how it's so very different from acute pain was not something that was ever on our horizon," pain expert Professor Fiona Blyth…

5 Hosts: Fiona Blyth, Lorimer Moseley, Michael Nicholas and 2 other

Trust Me I'm An Expert: Why February is the real danger month for power blackouts

The urban heat island and summertime blackouts. The Conversation25.6 MB (download)

It's been hot -- and it's going to get hotter. Australia has experienced some record hot days in recent weeks and scientists say Sydney and Melbourne need to prepare for 50℃ days by the end of the century, or sooner. In today's episode of Trust Me I'm An Expert, we're unpacking the research on why some of the most disadvantaged parts of our cities cop the worst of a heatwave. And Chris Dunstan, an…

3 Hosts: Casey Furlong, Chris Dunstan, and Marco Amati

Trust Me, I'm an Expert: Risk

Trust Me, I’m an Expert: Risk. CC BY45.3 MB (download)

Ah, the new year. A time for throwing off your shackles, following your bliss, quitting your job and abandoning your family to finally start the artisinal yak-butter-sculpture studio of your dreams. But big choices come with big risks. In this episode of Trust Me, I'm an Expert, Hassan Vally, an expert in epidemiology from La Trobe University, talks about "microlives", which measure how much your life…

3 Hosts: Alex Russell, Hassan Vally, and Michelle H Lim

Marrying across Australia's Catholic-Protestant divide

Marrying across Australia’s Catholic-Protestant divide. Trust Me, I'm An Expert, CC BY-ND44.1 MB (download)

These days, when Australians of Irish Catholic descent have occupied the highest positions in the land, it may seem hollow to talk of them as marginalised. But right up to the 1970s the Catholic-Protestant divide was deeply entrenched – with painful and often lasting social consequences for those who dared to marry across it. Siobhan McHugh, a journalism academic and oral historian, captured some of…

1 Host: Siobhan McHugh

Trust Me, I'm An Expert: Competition

Trust Me, I’m An Expert: Competition. The Conversation, CC BY62.4 MB (download)

Did you fight with a brother or sister when you were little? Do you still? According to Rob Brooks, professor of evolutionary ecology at UNSW, sibling competition has played a more important role in human evolution than many of us realise. "Siblings compete with one another for the love and affection of their parents but even more importantly for the investment of their parents. And that's been a really…

3 Hosts: Rob Brooks, Rob Hess, and Seng W. Loke

Trust Me, I'm An Expert: a lawyer, a biblical scholar and a fact-checker walk into the same-sex marriage debate...

Trust Me, I’m An Expert: Episode 1. The Conversation, CC BY-ND81.9 MB (download)

Where should the line fall between protecting people's right to hold religious beliefs and the right to be free from discrimination? It's a question that's emerged several times as the same-sex marriage debate has unfolded in Australia. "Freedom of religion is not absolute. And neither is anti-discrimination law. Both are rights, absolutely, but both have limitations - particularly where they impinge…

3 Hosts: Jennifer Power, Renae Barker, and Robyn J. Whitaker

Trust Me, I'm An Expert: a new podcast from The Conversation

Everything from the curious to the serious. The Conversation, CC BY-ND4.16 MB (download)

Trust Me, I'm An Expert is a new monthly podcast from The Conversation, where we bring you the most fascinating, surprising stories from the academic world. On this show, we ask the experts to bust the myths, explain the science and put the news headlines into context -- and to do it in a way we can understand and enjoy. Listen to our teaser episode, above, to get a taste of the amazing stories ahead…

4 Hosts: Jennifer Power, Renae Barker, Rob Brooks and 1 other

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