Shankar Vedantam Speaker Photo

Shankar Vedantam

Creator and host of Hidden Brain, Shankar Vedantam, is an expert on social science and human behavior. Today, he speaks internationally on how the “hidden brain” shapes our world.

Meet Shankar Vedantam

Shankar Vedantam has been reporting on human behavior and social science research for more than 25 years. In 2010, he published a book further exploring these topics and introducing the idea of “the hidden brain.” He is also well-known for his keynote and motivational speaking. Shankar Vedantam is available to be hired for corporate and private events. Contact the Mollie Plotkin Group today to inquire about Shankar Vedantam’s fees.

Want to book Shankar Vedantam for an event?

Contact the Mollie Plotkin Group at 215-510-6607 to book Shankar Vedantam for corporate or private events, keynote speeches, workshops, fireside chats, motivational speaking, or virtual appearances. Our agency will work directly with your organization and our keynote speakers to create an unforgettable event.
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Before becoming well-known with NPR, Shankar Vedantam spent 10 years as a national correspondent at The Washington Post. From 2007 to 2009, Shankar Vedantam also served as a columnist, writing the Department of Human Behavior column for “The Post.” Then in 2009-2010, Vedantam served as a fellow at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University. Finally, between 2011 and 2020, Shankar was NPR’s social science correspondent. In addition to his other work, Shankar is the author of the book The Hidden Brain. He is also co-author of the book Useful Delusions, with Bill Mesler.

The Hidden Brain

Shankar and NPR launched the Hidden Brain podcast in 2015. The podcast receives more than three million downloads per week and its radio show counterpart is featured on nearly 400 public radio stations around the United States. Vedantam and Hidden Brain have been recognized by:

  • The Edward R Murrow Award
  • The American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • The Society for Personality and Social Psychology
  • The International Society of Political Psychology
  • The Society of Professional Journalists
  • The National Association of Black Journalists
  • The Austen Riggs Center, the American Psychoanalytic Association
  • The Webby Awards
  • The Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors
  • The South Asian Journalists Association
  • The Asian American Journalists Association
  • The Pennsylvania Newspaper Association
  • The American Public Health Association
  • The Templeton-Cambridge Fellowship on Science and Religion, and the Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Journalism Fellowship.


In 2019, Shankar launched Hidden Brain Media to connect more deeply with his audience and to experiment with new platforms and media.

What is the “Hidden Brain?”

“Hidden brain” is a term Shankar created to describe a range of influences that manipulate us without our awareness. Some aspects of the hidden brain have to do with mental shortcuts or heuristics, others are related to errors in the way memory and attention work, and some deal with social dynamics and relationships.

By drawing a simple line between mental activities we are aware of and mental activities we are not aware of, the “hidden brain” subsumes many concepts in wide circulation: the unconscious, the subconscious, and the implicit.

How to Hire Shankar Vedantam

Find out how to hire Shankar Vedantam to appear at your next event. Contact the Mollie Plotkin Group to inquire about Shankar Vedantam’s availability and cost. When booking Shankar Vedantam for an event, we need to know the type of venue and location the event will take place. Shankar Vedantam is a popular choice for corporate events, private events, and virtual events. So, you can click the Check Availability button or contact us and an MPG Shankar Vedantam booking agent will get back to you within 48 hours.

Shankar Vedantam Booking Price

How much to book Shankar Vedantam depends on the type of event. So, the cost to hire Shankar Vedantam for corporate or private events is available by contacting a Mollie Plotkin Group Agent. Notably, Shankar Vedantam is available for conferences, festivals, private parties, and events. Just contact the Mollie Plotkin Group and tell the booking agent the proposed date, time, and location.

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Fill out the form to find out when Shankar Vedantam is available.

Upcoming Engagements

Our speakers are in high demand! View their upcoming events.

Aug 08 - 09 2024

Global Leadership Summit 2024 – Keynote Speaker Carey Lohrenz – Chicago, IL

Willow Creek Community Church
Aug 18 - 21 2024

Allied Solutions CNC’24 – Keynote Speaker Lisa Bodell – BC, Canada

The Fairmont Chateau Whistler
Sep 04 - 06 2024

Credit Union Leadership Symposium 2024 – Keynote Speaker Samantha Radocchia – Nashville, TN

Omni Nashville Hotel
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Key Audience Takeaways

Unconscious Bias

Highly interactive presentation acclaimed in business, educational, and legal settings.

Making Change

How to use the “hidden brain” to drive change in organizations, communities, and individuals.

Innovation & Creativity

How the brain can help us — or hinder us — in coming up with breakthroughs and in making crucial decisions. Building a “learning organization.”


Fear influences the behavior of investors, voters, and parents. But hidden algorithms in the brain often cause our fears to be out of whack with reality. How can you recalibrate your mind to focus on the things that actually cause harm?


Using social science research to get ideas across — and to stick.

The Science of Excellence

Understanding elite performance in business, sports, and the arts.

The Good Life

The surprising science of altruism, ethics, and philanthropy.

Big Data

How does the science of big data align with the ultimate big data machine – the brain?

Client Testimony for Shankar Vedantam


The Hidden Brain: How our Unconscious Minds Elect Presidents, Control Markets, Wage Wars and Save Our Lives

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