Chicken little forecast

Still Chugging Along

Volcanoes are erupting in The Philippines, but on-fire Australia received some welcome rain. The Iran war cries have been called off and The Donald’s military powers are about to be hamstrung by the Senate. Meanwhile, his impeachment trial is starting, and we’re all on Twitter for a front-row seat.


What Could Go Right? Season 4

Featuring Zachary Karabell & Emma Varvaloucas

Season 4 of “What Could Go Right?” returns on February 15, 2023, continuing to examine the world and ask about the role of optimism vs. pessimism, hope vs. fear, and progress vs. regress. Each week we’re joined by contributors from diverse fields of business, tech, journalism, politics, and more—all united in their conviction that humanity’s ingenuity and willingness to cooperate for the common good is ultimately more potent than the forces pulling in the other direction.

Prefer to read? Check out the Audio Transcript

Emma Varvaloucas: Hello doomscrollers, defeatists, and cynics…

Listen, we get it. We’re living in the same world you are: a world tipping toward authoritarianism and polarization, a world burning, freezing, or flooding, a world feeling increasing economic strife and struggle. But what if the constant barrage of bad news is disproportionately shaping the way we see the world. What if we’re not paying enough attention to what’s going right?

And there is plenty that is going right—from the decline of poverty to scientific breakthroughs to politicians actually passing good laws. It’s just that you don’t hear about it on the news. 

If you’re looking for a change, join us weekly on “What Could Go Right?” as we talk with leaders from across fields, including environmental experts, social and tech entrepreneurs, policy setters—anyone who challenges, with evidence, the negative narrative that we are so used to hearing. Plus we bring you the good news that is flying underneath the media’s radar. These are stories and conversations that will inspire and empower you—or at least walk you off the ledge.

Whether you need a pick-me-up or you are already an optimist looking for smart, new solutions to old problems, check out “What Could Go Right?” with Zachary Karabell and me, Emma Varvaloucas, wherever you listen to podcasts.

New episodes coming soon! Season 4 starts February 15th.


Meet the Hosts

Zachary Karabell

Emma Varvaloucas



Climate Capital and a Green Tech Future

Featuring Jigar Shah

Will the green transition happen, and how far do we have to go? Jigar Shah, the director of the Loan Programs Office in the US Department of Energy, shares his insights into the current landscape, future potential, and challenges for the successful commercial deployment of critical clean energy technologies.


Progress Check: Politics and AI, Homeless Vets, and STDs

Featuring Zachary Karabell and Emma Varvaloucas

How much of a threat is AI to elections with new disclosure rules from big platforms in place? What's going on with infant mortality trends? And why can't we test for more illnesses at home? Zachary Karabell and Emma Varvaloucas are back to discuss the latest news stories we might have missed.


Change Is the Operative Force of History

Featuring Drew Gilpin Faust

What are the dangers of not acknowledging what has gotten better? How do we understand the marks history leaves on individuals? And what does a former president of Harvard think of higher education in the US today? We hear from historian, civil rights activist, and the first woman president of Harvard, Drew Gilpin Faust, about how her story and how activism can actually make a difference.