Gabriel Spitzer Gabriel Spitzer is Senior Editor of Short Wave, NPR's science podcast.
Gabriel Spitzer, photographed for NPR, 6 June 2022, in Washington DC. Photo by Farrah Skeiky for NPR.
Stories By

Gabriel Spitzer

Farrah Skeiky/NPR
Gabriel Spitzer, photographed for NPR, 6 June 2022, in Washington DC. Photo by Farrah Skeiky for NPR.
Farrah Skeiky/NPR

Gabriel Spitzer

Senior Editor, Short Wave

Gabriel Spitzer (he/him) is Senior Editor of Short Wave, NPR's science podcast. He comes to NPR following years of experience at Member stations – most recently at KNKX in Seattle, where he covered science and health and then co-founded and hosted the weekly show Sound Effect. That show told character-driven stories of the region's people. When the Pacific Northwest became the first place in the U.S. hit by COVID-19, the show switched gears and relaunched as Transmission, one of the country's first podcasts about the pandemic.

Spitzer spent six years at WBEZ, where he covered health and science and created the science podcast Clever Apes. Spitzer's public radio career started in Anchorage, with the Alaska Public Radio Network.

He spent a year on a John S. Knight Journalism Fellowship at Stanford. Spitzer has been honored with awards including the Kavli Science Journalism Award from the American Association for the Advancement of Science, as well as awards from the Association of Health Care Journalists and Public Media Journalists Association.

Spitzer lives in Seattle with his wife, two children and several unruly pets.

Story Archive

Wednesday

Palestinian children wait to collect food at a donation point in a refugee camp in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip on December 23, 2023. Mahmud Hams/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Mahmud Hams/AFP via Getty Images

Humanitarian crises abound. Why is the U.N. asking for less aid money than last year?

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Saturday

A bleak outlook for global humanitarian funding in 2024

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Saturday

Is the series of snowy storms in North America making you a little ... um ... squirrely? Well imagine if this was the first time you ever saw snow in your life! We reached out to people in the Global South and other parts to share their stories of the first time they saw snow. Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

Monday

Far from the Earth, time gets extremely weird. Black holes can cause it to stretch and even break down entirely. NASA/JPL-Caltech hide caption

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NASA/JPL-Caltech

Our lives are ruled by the illusion of time

Time is a concept so central to our daily lives. Yet, the closer scientists look at it, the more it seems to fall apart. Time ticks by differently at sea level than it does on a mountaintop. The universe's expansion slows time's passage. "And some scientists think time might not even be 'real' — or at least not fundamental," says NPR science correspondent Geoff Brumfiel. In this encore episode, Geoff joins Short Wave Scientist in Residence Regina G. Barber to bend our brains with his learnings about the true nature of time. Along the way, we visit the atomic clocks at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, consider distant exploding stars and parse the remains of subatomic collisions.

Our lives are ruled by the illusion of time

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Sunday

Ten-month-old Ahmin Esas, who was born with clubfoot, shares a moment with his mother and brother in the family's home near Battambang, Cambodia. As a single parent with limited means, his mother, Pho Sok overcame many challenges to ensure her son could receive the treatment he needed. Tommy Trenchard for NPR hide caption

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Tommy Trenchard for NPR

Sunday

Friday

Monday

Researchers camp out on the Greenland ice sheet beneath the aurora borealis, or the northern lights. Jessica Mejía hide caption

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Jessica Mejía

How glaciers move — and affect sea level rise

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Monday

TravelCouples/Getty Images

Monday

Credits: NASA/Goddard/SDO

How Venus got caught up in an 18th century space race

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Thursday

Workers load the trucks with boxes after a planes carrying Turkish humanitarian aid for residents of the Gaza Strip landed at El Arish International Airport in Egypt, neighboring the enclave under intense Israeli blockade and bombardment on October 13, 2023. Stringer/Anadolu via Getty Images hide caption

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Stringer/Anadolu via Getty Images

Monday

Marian/Getty Images

'Choose Your Own Adventure' gets a real-world math rebrand

Ever read those Choose Your Own Adventure books of the '80s and '90s? As a kid, mathematician Pamela Harris was hooked on them. Years later she realized how much those books have in common with her field, combinatorics, the branch of math concerned with counting. It, too, depends on thinking through endless, branching possibilities. So, she and several of her students set out to write a scholarly paper in the style of Choose Your Own Adventure books. In this encore episode, Dr. Harris tells host Regina G. Barber all about how the project began, how it gets complicated when you throw in wormholes and clowns, and why math is fundamentally a creative act.

'Choose Your Own Adventure' gets a real-world math rebrand

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Wednesday

The groundbreaking research of Linsey Marr, an aerosols expert and professor of civil and environmental engineering at Virginia Tech, showed that the SARS-CoV-2 virus is airborne as opposed to traveling in large droplets that fall with gravity. MacArthur Foundation hide caption

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MacArthur Foundation

This MacArthur 'genius' knew the initial theory of COVID transmission was flawed

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Friday

PEPFAR, the U.S. multibillion dollar effort to fight HIV/AIDS, funds organizations such as the Coptic hospital in Nairobi, Kenya. Brent Stirton/Getty Images hide caption

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Brent Stirton/Getty Images

Tuesday

500,000-year-old structure has researchers rethinking early human intelligence

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Friday

Archaeologists dug into a riverbank in Zambia and uncovered what they call the earliest known wood construction by humans. The half-million year-old artifacts could change how we see Stone-Age people. Larry Barham and Geoff Duller/University of Liverpool hide caption

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Larry Barham and Geoff Duller/University of Liverpool

World's oldest wooden structure defies Stone-Age stereotypes

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Thursday

This 500,000-year-old structure has researchers rethinking early human intelligence

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Sunday

Thursday

Study shows NFL jersey numbers are linked to perceptions of body type

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Wednesday

Study shows NFL jersey numbers linked to perceptions of body type

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A field of green beans growing in Kigali, Rwanda. Small-scale farms provide 70 to 80% of Africa's food. Camille Delbos/Art In All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images hide caption

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Camille Delbos/Art In All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images

Thursday

The burn zone on Maui is laden with toxins, officials say

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Some residents of west Maui are able to go back to their communities

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