What If...

Good ideas often start with a simple question. Nebraskans answer with innovation and creativity. We tell their stories in our Nebraska Public Media series, "What If..."

Here's a preview of our new episodes, premiering Jan. 3 at 9 and 9:30 pm CT!

"What If..." is an exploration of innovation, creativity, invention and discovery," says "What If..." host and producer Mike Tobias. "Stories about interesting Nebraskans with interesting ideas in a wide range of areas, like university research, entrepreneurship, education, economic development and more. It’s a great project because we’re having fun and challenging ourselves creatively to tell these stories in a way that takes you inside the worlds and minds of these innovators."

Since the project debuted in 2019, it's earned multiple local, regional and national awards, including:

  • Two Heartland Regional Emmy awards and six other Heartland Regional Emmy nominations
  • A National Educational Telecommunications Association (NETA) award
  • Five Nebraska Broadcasters Association Awards

Innovator Insights

What drives Nebraska’s innovators, big thinkers, risk takers? How do they think? What influences them? What have they learned from? What’s next? We explore this in a separate "What If..." project component, designed for a high school/college age target audience, called "Innovator Insights."

CLICK HERE to watch "Innovator Insights" videos (including versions with Spanish-language captions), and access viewing guides and discussion questions for educators.

"What If..." Music

"What If..." celebrates innovation and creativity. So in our stories we showcase original music, submitted for use in the project by a wide range Nebraska composers. Since 2019 we've used 143 pieces of music created by 33 different composers in our award-winning stories and shows!

  • CLICK HERE for a listing of the songs and composers from each "What If..." story.
  • Submission details: Nebraska composers of all ages and levels; finished music with no lyrics and at least 30 seconds long; WAV format, 48K, 24 bit stereo; and all styles and multiple submissions are welcome! Composers of music will not be paid, but will be notified and credited while the piece is being used in a segment, during end credits and on the "What If..." web site.
  • Composers retain all rights for other uses of their music, and any submitted pieces will only be used in "What If..."
  • Send your original music (and any questions) to "What If..." producer/host Mike Tobias at mtobias@NebraskaPublicMedia.org.

More Content


Comments, questions, ideas? Contact "What If..." host/producer Mike Tobias at mtobias@NebraskaPublicMedia.org. And follow Mike and the project on Twitter and Facebook.