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Best Business Books: J
Jane Austen, Game Theorist by
Call Number: Call Number: PR4038.G36 C49 2013 e-book (MyiLibrary and Library West)
Publication Date: 2013
Game theory--the study of how people make choices while interacting with others--is one of the most popular technical approaches in social science today. But as Michael Chwe reveals in his insightful new book, Jane Austen explored game theory's core ideas in her six novels roughly two hundred years ago.Jane Austen, Game Theoristshows how this beloved writer theorized choice and preferences, prized strategic thinking, argued that jointly strategizing with a partner is the surest foundation for intimacy, and analyzed why superiors are often strategically clueless about inferiors. With a diverse range of literature and folktales, this book illustrates the wide relevance of game theory and how, fundamentally, we are all strategic thinkers. Although game theory's mathematical development began in the Cold War 1950s, Chwe finds that game theory has earlier subversive historical roots in Austen's novels and in "folk game theory" traditions, including African American folktales. Chwe makes the case that these literary forebears are game theory's true scientific predecessors. He considers how Austen in particular analyzed "cluelessness"--the conspicuous absence of strategic thinking--and how her sharp observations apply to a variety of situations, including U.S. military blunders in Iraq and Vietnam. Jane Austen, Game Theoristbrings together the study of literature and social science in an original and surprising way.
John Kenneth Galbraith by
Call Number: HB119.G33 P37 2005 (Library West)
ISBN: 0374281688. Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2005. 820 p. $35.00
Publication Date: 2005-02-16
The life and times of America’s most celebrated economist, assessing his lessons—and warnings—for us today John Kenneth Galbraith’s books—among themThe Affluent SocietyandAmerican Capitalism—are famous for good reason. Written by a scholar renowned for energetic political engagement and irrepressible wit, they are models of provocative good sense that warn prophetically of the dangers of deregulated markets, war in Asia, corporate greed, and stock-market bubbles. Galbraith’s work has also deeply—and controversially—influenced his own profession, and in Richard Parker’s hands his biography becomes a vital reinterpretation of American economics and public policy. Born and raised on a small Canadian farm, Galbraith began teaching at Harvard during the Depression. He was FDR’s “price czar” during the war and then a senior editor ofFortunebefore returning to Harvard and to fame as a bestselling writer. Parker shows how, from his early championing of Keynes to his acerbic analysis of America’s “private wealth and public squalor,” Galbraith regularly challenged prevailing theories and policies. And his account of Galbraith’s remarkable friendship with John F. Kennedy, whom he served as a close advisor while ambassador to India, is especially relevant for its analysis of the intense, dynamic debates that economists and politicians can have over how America should manage its wealth and power. This masterful chronicle gives color, depth, and meaning to the record of an extraordinary life.
Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple's Greatest Products by
Call Number: HD9696.2 U64 A6736 2013 (Library West)
Publication Date: 2013-11-14
In 1997, Steve Jobs returned to Apple as CEO with the unenviable task of turning around the company he had founded. One night, Jobs discovered a scruffy British designer toiling away at Apple’s corporate headquarters, surrounded by hundreds of sketches and prototypes. It was then that Jobs realized he had found a talent who could reverse the company’s long decline. That young designer was Jony Ive. His collaboration with Jobs would produce some of the world's most iconic technology products including the iMac,iPod, iPad, and iPhone. Leander Kahney, the bestselling author of Inside Steve’s Brain, offers a detailed portrait of a creative genius. He shows us how Jony Ive went from an English art school student with dyslexia to the man whose immense insights have altered the pattern of our lives. This book gives insight into how Jony Ive (now senior vice president of design) has redefined the ways in which we work, entertain, and communicate with one another.
The Judge by
Call Number: HC102.5 .M377 M35 2011 (Library West)
ISBN: 9780300167146. Yale University Press, 575 p. $38.00
Publication Date: 2011-05-24
Lawyer, judge, banker, classics professor, and councilman, Thomas Mellon greatly influenced the fortunes of his hometown, Pittsburgh, throughout the nineteenth century. In the process, he became one of the city's most important business leaders, and he laid the foundation for a family that would contribute considerably to the city's growth and welfare for much of the next hundred years, becoming one of the world's most recognizable names in industry, innovation, and philanthropy. Through his in-depth examination of the extensive Mellon family archives, inThe JudgeJames Mellon—a direct descendent of Thomas Mellon—has fashioned an incisive portrait of the elder Mellon that presents the man in full. Offering a singular and insightful characterization of the Scotch-Irish value system that governed the patriarch's work and life, James Mellon captures the judge's complexities and contradictions, revealing him as a truly human figure. Among the recent biographies of Pittsburgh's famous businessmen,The Judgestands apart from the pack because of the author's unique perspective and his objective and scholarly approach to his subject.
Judge This by
Call Number: (Library West, pre-Order)
Publication Date: Simon & Schuster, 2015. $16.99
A fun, playful look at the importance of first impressions-in design and in life-from acclaimed book designer Chip Kidd. First impressions are everything. They dictate whether something stands out, how we engage with it, whether we buy it, and how we feel. In Judge This, renowned designer Chip Kidd takes us through his day as he takes in first impressions of all kinds. We follow this visual journey as Kidd encounters and engages with everyday design, breaking down the good, the bad, the absurd, and the brilliant as only someone with a critical, trained eye can. From the design of your morning paper to the subway ticket machine to the books you browse to the smartphone you use to the packaging for the chocolate bar you buy as an afternoon treat, Kidd reveals the hidden secrets behind each of the design choices, with a healthy dose of humor, expertise, and of course, judgment as he goes. Judge This is a design love story, exposing the often invisible beauty and betrayal in simple design choices-ones most of us never even think to notice. And with each object, Kidd proves that first impressions, whether we realize it or not, have a huge impact on the way we perceive the world.
Judgment Calls by
Call Number: HD30.23 .D3718 2012 (Library West)
ISBN: 9781422158111. Harvard BusinessReview Press,266p.,$30.00
Publication Date: 2012-04-03
Your guide to making better decisions Despite the dizzying amount of data at our disposal today#151;and an increasing reliance on analytics to make the majority of our decisions#151;many of our most critical choices still come down to human judgment. This fact is fundamental to organizations whose leaders must often make crucial decisions: to do this they need the best available insights.In 'Judgment Calls', authors Tom Davenport and Brook Manville share twelve stories of organizations that have successfully tapped their data assets, diverse perspectives, and deep knowledge to build an organizational decision-making capability#151;a competence they say can make the difference between success and failure. This book introduces a model that taps the collective judgment of an organization so that the right decisions are made, and the entire organization profits.Through the stories in 'Judgment Calls', the authors#151;both of them seasoned management thinkers and advisers#151;make the case for the wisdom of organizations and suggest ways to use it to best advantage. Each chapter tells a unique story of one dilemma and its ultimate resolution, bringing into high relief one key to the power of collective judgment. Individually, these stories inspire and instruct; together, they form a model for building an organizational capacity for broadly based, knowledge-intensive decision making.You've read 'The Wisdom of Crowds' and 'Competing on Analytics'. Now read 'Judgment Calls'. You, and your organization, will make better decisions.
Judgment in Managerial Decision Making by
Call Number: HD30.23 .B38 2013 (Library West)
Publication Date: 2013
In situations requiring careful judgment, every individual is influenced by their own biases to some extent. With Bazerman's new seventh edition, readers can quickly learn how to overcome those biases to make better managerial decisions. The book examines judgment in a variety of organizational contexts, and provides practical strategies for changing and improving decision-making processes so that they become part of one's permanent behavior.
Junkyard Planet: Travels in the Billion-Dollar Trash Trade by
Call Number: HD9975 .A2 M495 2013 (Library West)
Publication Date: 2013
In Junkyard Planet, Adam Minter-veteran journalist and son of an American junkyard owner-travels deeply into a vast, often hidden, multibillion-dollar industry that's transforming our economy and environment.Minter takes us from back-alley Chinese computer recycling operations to high-tech facilities capable of processing a jumbo jet's worth of recyclable trash every day. Along the way, we meet an unforgettable cast of characters who've figured out how to build fortunes from what we throw away: Leonard Fritz, a young boy "grubbing" in Detroit's city dumps in the 1930s; Johnson Zeng, a former plastics engineer roaming America in search of scrap; and Homer Lai, an unassuming barber turned scrap titan in Qingyuan, China. Junkyard Planet reveals how "going green" usually means making money-and why that's often the most sustainable choice, even when the recycling methods aren't pretty.With unmatched access to and insight on the junk trade, and the explanatory gifts and an eye for detail worthy of a John McPhee or William Langewiesche, Minter traces the export of America's recyclables and the massive profits that China and other rising nations earn from it. What emerges is an engaging, colorful, and sometimes troubling tale of consumption, innovation, and the ascent of a developing world that recognizes value where Americans don't. Junkyard Planet reveals that we might need to learn a smarter way to take out the trash.