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Why the world needs socially awkward people

Part 1 of the TED Radio Hour episode So Awkward.

As a kid, Ty Tashiro was an awkward stats nerd. Now, as a social scientist, he explains why the characteristics that make people awkward can actually set them up for great things.

About Ty Tashiro

Ty Tashiro as a kid
/ Courtesy of Ty Tashiro
Courtesy of Ty Tashiro
Ty Tashiro as a kid

Ty Tashiro is an author and social scientist. He received his PhD in psychology from the University of Minnesota and has taught at the University of Maryland and the University of Colorado. He has written two books: Awkward: The Science of Why We're Socially Awkward and Why That's Awesome and The Science of Happily Ever After.

This segment of the TED Radio Hour was produced by James Delahoussaye and edited by Sanaz Meshkinpour. You can follow us on Facebook @TEDRadioHourand email us at

Copyright 2024 NPR

Manoush Zomorodi
Manoush Zomorodi is the host of TED Radio Hour. She is a journalist, podcaster and media entrepreneur, and her work reflects her passion for investigating how technology and business are transforming humanity.
James Delahoussaye
[Copyright 2024 NPR]
Sanaz Meshkinpour
[Copyright 2024 NPR]