David Robson

Science writer and editor

I am an award-winning writer and editor, who specialises in writing in-depth articles probing the extremes of the human mind, body and behaviour. My subjects have included the limits of intelligence, the true stories of 'real-life' vampires, and our burgeoning understanding of the ways that culture shapes your psychology. I am currently writing The Intelligence Trap for Hodder and Stoughton (UK)/WW Norton (USA).

I hope you enjoy my clippings. If you would like to get in touch, please email d_a_robson "at" hotmail.com.




How to supercharge the way you learn

Face to face with the world's leading memory experts, my mind is beginning to feel very humble. Ben Whately, for instance, tells me about the famous mnemonist Matteo Ricci, a...

BBC Future

Hypnosis: The day my mind was 'possessed'

Scientists are using hypnosis to understand why some people believe they’re inhabited by paranormal beings. To find out more, David Robson lost his mind.


A five-step guide to not being stupid

If you ever doubt the idea that the very clever can also be very silly, just remember the time the smartest man in America tried to electrocute a turkey. Benjamin Franklin had...


What's the prime of your life?

Is ageing an inevitable decline - or are there unexpected perks to getting older? David Robson reports.


The strangest sounds in the world

"You know you were told to be nice and not to heckle?" Sophie Meekings asks her audience in the dingy cellar of the North London pub. "Well, you can heckle me if you want - it's...


The philosopher who studies the experience of coffee

Is coffee much deeper than it appears? David Robson meets a philosopher who certainly thinks so - he's attempting to use the drink to probe the human mind.

BBC Future

What makes an urban legend?

You may have already met Slender Man - the preternaturally tall, spectral being wearing a black suit and tie, with a white and featureless face. He is often seen in the shadows...

BBC Future

Five things Alice in Wonderland reveals about the brain

Lewis Carroll was remarkably modest about his masterpiece. "The heroine spends an hour underground, and meets various birds, beasts, etc (no fairies), endowed with speech," he...

BBC Future

The contagious thought that could kill you

Beware the scaremongers. Like a witch doctor's spell, their words might be spreading modern plagues. We have long known that expectations of a malady can be as dangerous as a...

BBC Future

Dos and don'ts for restful sleep

Few experiences are as maddening as a restless night. Sleep should, in theory, be the most natural and effortless activity in the world, yet insomnia is common to many of us. To...

BBC Future

Psychology: the man who studies everyday evil

If you had the opportunity to feed harmless bugs into a coffee grinder, would you enjoy the experience? Even if the bugs had names, and you could hear their shells painfully...

BBC Future

Do dreams occur in slow motion?

The sleeping mind enters a time warp, says David Robson

New Scientist

A brief history of the brain

How did we evolve from a single cell to thinking beings? This is the story of the most complex object in the universe

BBC Future

How to curb hunger pangs with your mind

Eric Robinson has a surprising tool for weight loss. It's something we all have, but perhaps don't use it as much as we'd like: our memory. Dieters often feel that they are...

BBC Future

The strange case of the man with two hearts

It changed his body - and his mind

New Scientist

The trouble with neuroscience

With neuroscience developing so fast, what are the perils of reading the brain for secrets about human nature?

BBC Future

The best way to predict the future

A small group of people have a surprising knack for correctly predicting the course of world events – and you could be one of them, says David Robson.

The Observer

How the visual language of comics could have its roots in the ice age

Psychologist and comics obsessive Neil Cohn believes cartoons have a sophisticated language all their own


Mystery booms: What's the cause?

The beginning of Armageddon, or an alien invasion? Over the weekend, people in the UK and parts of the US were awoken by loud, rumbling noises. David Robson explores the...

Washington Post

Where do our minds go at night?

How do our brains create the dream world, with its eerie mixture of the familiar and the bizarre?