What Next

Our Year: Emergency Mode Can’t Last Forever

 When do we decide to move on with our lives?


Episode Notes

The COVID-19 pandemic exposed crucial gaps in the public health system, including the government’s inability to gather data quickly and accurately. After a year of lockdowns and isolation, a return to life resembling normalcy is in sight, but how will we know when we get there?

Guests: Alexis Madrigal, co-founder of The COVID Tracking Project, and staff writer at The Atlantic.

Slate Plus members get bonus segments and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now.


About the Show

The problem with the news right now? It’s everywhere. And each day, it can feel like we’re all just mindlessly scrolling. It’s why we created What Next. This short daily show is here to help you make sense of things. When the news feels overwhelming, we’re here to help you answer: What next? Look for new episodes every weekday morning.

All episodes


  • Mary Harris is the host and managing editor of What Next, Slate's new daily news podcast. She has reported throughout the public radio system, for NPR, Marketplace, and WNYC.