What CEOs are reading - July 2018

A new dark age, cruel and dangerous social media and Sean Spicer feature in this month's reading list.

by Richard Kilgarriff
Last Updated: 17 Jul 2018

Last month I wrote about the ‘loveliness’ of leadership aspired to by Adam Smith (1723-1790), the founding father of free market capitalism. Lo and behold, this month we not only have a brilliant book about the man on our list (Adam Smith – What He Thought And Why It Matters by Jesse Norman), but also we’ve been besotted in actual, real life, by a ‘lovely leader’ in the Smithian mould – England manager Gareth Southgate.

He may not have brought football home this time, but he has at least changed the culture of football management today, tomorrow and for a long time to come.

Superminds: The Surprising Power of People and Computers Thinking Together

Thomas W Malone

The founding director of the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence shows how groups of people working together in superminds - like hierarchies, markets, democracies, and communities - have been responsible for almost all human achievements in business, government, science, and beyond.

Adam Smith: What He Thought And Why It Matters

Jesse Norman

Adam Smith is now widely regarded the most influential economist of all time. But what he really thought, and what the implications of his ideas are, remain fiercely contested. Was he an eloquent advocate of freedom or an apologist for inequality or none/all of the above?

New Female Tribes

Rachel Pashley

In a global survey orchestrated over five years, 8,000+ women responded, aged seventeen to seventy across 19 countries to questions posed by Rachel Pashley, Head Strategist at ad agency J. Walter Thompson.

New Dark Age: Technology, Knowledge and The End of The Future

James Bridle

A warning against the future in which the contemporary promise of a new technologically assisted Enlightenment may just deliver its opposite: an age of complex uncertainty, predictive algorithms, surveillance, and the hollowing out of empathy.

The Bank That Lived a Little: Barclays in the Age of the Very Free Market

Philip Auger

Three decades of boardroom intrigue at one of Britain's biggest financial institutions. In a tale of feuds, grandiose dreams and a struggle for supremacy between rival strategies and their adherents, a riveting account of Barclays' journey from an old Quaker bank to a full-throttle capitalist machine.

Quantum Economics: The New Science of Money

David Orrell

Just as physicists learn about matter by studying the exchange of particles at the subatomic level, so economics should begin by analysing the nature of money-based transactions. 

Think Again: How To Reason and Argue

Walter Sinnott-Armstrong

Our personal and political worlds are rife with arguments and disagreements, some of them petty and vitriolic. The inability to compromise and understand the other side is widespread today. What can we do to change this?

Notes on a Nervous Planet

Matt Haig

Examining everything from inequality, social media, and the news; to things closer to our daily lives, like how we sleep, how we exercise, and the distinction we draw between our minds and our bodies.

Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now

Jaron Lanier

A spirited attempt to show how social media works – in the author's own view - by deploying surveillance and manipulation of its users. Lanier believes cruel and dangerous effects are at the heart of its current business model and design.

The Briefing

Sean Spicer

Behind the scenes of some of the biggest news stories of our time, offering a glimpse into what it’s like to stand at the press secretary’s podium on behalf of the most divisive president in US history.

Richard Kilgarriff is editorial director of BookomiIf you’d like to run a business book club in your company and/or meet some of the brilliant minds listed below, via video or in person (with the exception of Adam Smith or Gareth Southgate) contact hello@bookomi.com.

Main image credit: Billion photos/Shutterstock 

Book jackets: the publishers


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