Gary Knight/VII/Gary Knight/VII
Shankar Vedantam
Gary Knight/VII/Gary Knight/VII

Shankar Vedantam

Correspondent, Science Desk

Shankar Vedantam is NPR's social science correspondent and the host of the Hidden Brain podcast. The focus of his reporting is on human behavior and the social sciences, and how research in those fields can get listeners to think about the news in unusual and interesting ways.

Before joining NPR in 2011, Vedantam spent 10 years as a reporter at The Washington Post. From 2007 to 2009, he was also a columnist, and wrote the Department of Human Behavior column for the Post. Vedantam writes an occasional column for Slate called "Hidden Brain."

Throughout his career, Vedantam has been recognized with many journalism honors including awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, the Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors, the South Asian Journalists Association, the Asian American Journalists Association, the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association, and the American Public Health Association.

In 2009-2010, Vedantam served as a fellow at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University. He participated in the 2005 Templeton-Cambridge Fellowship on Science and Religion, the 2003-2004 World Health Organization Journalism Fellowship, and the 2002-2003 Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Journalism Fellowship.

Vedantam is the author of the non-fiction book, The Hidden Brain: How our Unconscious Minds Elect Presidents, Control Markets, Wage Wars and Save Our Lives. The book, published in 2010, described how unconscious biases influence people.

Outside of journalism, Vedantam has written fiction and plays. His short story-collection, The Ghosts of Kashmir, was published in 2005. The previous year, the Brick Playhouse in Philadelphia produced his full-length, comedy play, Tom, Dick and Harriet.

Vedantam has served as a lecturer at many academic institutions including Harvard University and Columbia University. In 2010, he completed a two year-term as a senior scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington. Since 2006, he has served on the advisory board of the Templeton-Cambridge Fellowships in Science & Religion.

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Does Studying Economics Make You Selfish?

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The program BAM (Becoming a Man) works with teenagers and uses cognitive behavior therapy to reduce violence in Chicago. Scott Olson/Getty Images hide caption

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Scott Olson/Getty Images

Researchers Examine Race Factor In Car Crashes Involving Pedestrians

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Today's college students aren't necessarily having more sex than previous generations, but the culture that permeates hookups on campus has changed. mark peterson/Corbis via Getty Images hide caption

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mark peterson/Corbis via Getty Images

Illustration of Dr. J. Marion Sims with Anarcha by Robert Thom. Anarcha was subjected to 30 experimental surgeries. Pearson Museum, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine hide caption

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Pearson Museum, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine

Why Eating The Same Food Increases People's Trust And Cooperation

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Barely a week after assuming office, President Donald Trump set off a worldwide firestorm when he decided to temporarily ban migrants from seven Muslim-majority countries and refugees from all over the world from entering the United States. Alex Brandon/AP hide caption

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Alex Brandon/AP

Research Examines The Effects Of Gender On Stated Ambition

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Though Donald Trump's policies may not help his voters economically, sociologist Arlie Hochschild says he is speaking to them on a deeper level: meeting their emotional needs. MICHAEL MATHES/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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MICHAEL MATHES/AFP/Getty Images

Kim Kardashian and Donald Trump exemplify our contradictory feelings about the rich and famous. As Hidden Brain explores this week, we idolize the powerful, but also relish their downfall. D Dipasupil/WireImage hide caption

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D Dipasupil/WireImage

Researchers Unravel Strange And Contradictory Feelings About Power

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Humans Worry About Self-Driving Cars. Maybe It Should Be The Reverse

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Are you feeling stuck? Scroll down to take our quiz and find out whether you have a "gravity" problem. Renee Klahr/NPR hide caption

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Renee Klahr/NPR

How Silicon Valley Can Help You Get Unstuck

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