Here are some great podcasts for Global Politics classes. The relevance of any particular episode may vary but overall, there are many great resources for IB Global Politics

“The Inquiry” from BBC World Service

Screen Shot 2021-07-30 at 1.54.17 PM Probably my favorite podcast for Global Politics. Each episode is around 20 minutes, there is a central question with four “expert witnesses” who that discuss a different aspect of the issue.  Accessible for teachers and students alike. Some great episodes include “Why is Brexit So Hard?” and  “Who gets to have their own country?”  (I have my students listen to this episode in our introductory unit along with this worksheet) https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p029399x

“Why it Matters” from the Council on Foreign Relations

Screen Shot 2021-07-30 at 1.59.57 PMRelatively new podcast but really well done. Topics have great variety but many are directly relevant and useable for Global Politics. This podcast “breaks down an issue that is shaping our world’s future. Join host Gabrielle Sierra as she speaks with the leaders and thinkers who are facing these questions head on.” Some great episodes include “Water Scarcity” and “The Dollar Privilege.” Each episode is around 30 minutes are very accessible for students. Could provide great background for beginning an Extended Essay or HL extension presentation. https://www.cfr.org/podcasts/why-it-matters


“Throughline” from NPR

Screen Shot 2021-07-30 at 1.56.18 PM

Usually around 40 minutes, this podcast goes through some of the deep background to help frame some of today’s most important issues. Great topics recently include “Borrowed Time” about Hong Kong’s present protests in the context of its history, and “No Friend But The Mountains” about the Kurdish people and their quest for a state. https://www.npr.org/podcasts/510333/throughline




“Sound Africa”

Screen Shot 2021-07-30 at 2.12.25 PM This is not a single podcast but a collection of podcasts focused on Africa. Their shows go into far greater depth than you get from mainstream news or podcasts. Currently (August 2021) they are releasing their “Think African” series with It describes itself as a “Bi-Monthly seasonal podcast engaging African thinkers and doers on what it means to Think, African.” Some episodes of interest are Episode 2: The Cost of Power and Episode 6: Who is the law for?. One of the other completed shows of interest includes “One Night in Snake Park”about a “January 2015 the killing of the 14-year old Siphiwe Mahori in Snake Park, Soweto which ignited a massive wave of xenophobic attacks as across South Africa.”

“Planet Money” from NPR

Really well researched, well produced podcast that covers topics related to the economy from the news. Mostly United States centered but also cover global topics. Search through the archive and you can find a lot of good quality podcasts on many topics. This podcast also can provide some foundations of economics if your students are lacking. I use their episode, “Why did the cow cross the border?” to help kids think about ideas related to free trade and borders.


In 2020, they started an economics “summer school” in which they discuss some foundational economic concepts that would be beneficial for providing a starting point for the Development unit. In Summer 2021 they are doing more episodes around these foundational concepts. 

Links for the summer school episodes: https://www.npr.org/series/1015448333/planet-money-summer-school

“The Indicator” from Planet Money and NPR

Screen Shot 2021-07-30 at 2.58.05 PM Spin off from Planet Money that produces almost daily 10 minute podcasts that cover economic stories from the news. Very accessible for students. Also very United States centered but cover global topics as well. Episodes of interest include “Australian Wine: Political Football” about Australia’s wine exports to China and “The Great Vaccine Patent-Off” about the economics of Covid vaccine protection.



How to Invent a Country

When did countries become countries? Misha Glenny on the borders, the stories and the people…

Really fascinating podcast that explored history and development of the concept of various countries around the world.


The Intelligence from The Economist

Comes out every week day. Covers a wide variety of international news stories. More of a podcast that explains what’s in the news than a deep dive but good for students and for class. Some interesting episodes include: “Borderline disorder: the UN’s refugee treaty at 70” from July 28th, 2021.

“The Intelligence is a current-affairs podcast, published every weekday by Economist Radio, 
that provides a fresh perspective on the events shaping your world.” https://theintelligence.economist.com/


“The Good Fight” by Yacha Mounk

The structure of this podcast is an interview between the Screen Shot 2021-07-30 at 3.06.04 PMhost and guests of relevance. Discussions cover great and interesting topics. The podcast describes itself as one that “searches for the ideas, policies and strategies that can beat authoritarian populism.” Interesting interviews include one with author Niall Ferguson titled, “Disaster is Political” and “The Perils of State Power.” Topics may be more geared toward teachers and those with deeper interests but interesting overall.