PART I. BASIC READINGS
Anielski, Mark. (2007). The Economics of Happiness; Building Genuine Wealth. Gabriola Island, BC: New Society Publishers.
In many ways, this book brings it all together. Anielski began as a policy analyst and economic advisor for the province of Alberta, and subsequently has held the same roles for the governments of Canada and China. He has been part of a movement criticizing ""the shortcomings of the gross domestic product (GDP)" as the basis for national income accounting and working to develop more realistic modeling tools, including the Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI). The most powerful chapter offers a "Genuine Wealth Model" based on five domains of assets or "capital" resources:
· Human Capital
· Social Capital
· Natural Capital
· Built [conventional physically constructed] Capital
· Financial Capital
The chapter on "Money and Genuine Wealth" summarizes the critique of the design flaws in conventional currencies that are developed at greater length by Tom Greco and Bernard Lietaer.
Cahn, Edgar. (2004). No More Throw-Away People: The Co-Production Imperative (2nd ed). Washington, DC: Essential Books.
Cahn documents the growth and successes of the Time Banking (Time Dollar) movement and develops the critical concepts of the "core economy" and "co-production."
Barnes, Peter. (2006). Capitalism 3.0: A Guide to Reclaiming the Commons. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler.
This is the book that defines "the commons" as a distinct and coherent economic sector. Barnes is a credentialed capitalist (co-founder of Working Assets), and his insight into the design flaws of conventional capitalism is knowledgeable, incisive, and easy to understand. Barnes sees the government, as currently dominated by corporate economic interests, as incapable of managing the commons, which includes natural, community, and cultural systems. He proposes a multiplicity of strong trusteeships as a third sector to manage these life and society sustaining systems.
Greco, Thomas H., Jr. (2009). The End of Money and the Future of Civilization. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green
The latest book by a pioneer in the study of money as basic to the understanding of economic systems and a vigorous advocate of alternative currency systems.
Lietaer, Bernard. (2001). The Future of Money: Creating New Wealth, Work, and a Wiser World. London: Century.
Lietaer offers a wide-ranging exploration of history and futurology. Lietaer is a systems analyst who has been a successful central banker, government consultant, and offshore currency trader. He argues that the design flaws in money as an institution are responsible for many of the negative characteristics of modern economies, including environmental degradation and the breakdown of community. He is an advocate of expanding the growing complementary (or local) currency movement. But he also proposes a Global Reference Currency (GRC) that could have positive effects in stabilizing the global economy.
I-B: Major Critiques of Contemporary Economic Theory & Practice
(2001). Eco-Economy: Building an Economy for the Earth. New York: Norton.
Brown, Lester. (2003). Plan B: Rescuing a Planet Under Stress and a Civilization in Trouble. New York: W. W. Norton
A sustainable civilization requires the global redesign of economic systems according to sound ecological principles. Eco-Economy lays the foundation and Plan B provides an updated policy agenda.
Douthwaite, Richard. (1999). The Growth Illusion: How Economic Growth Has Enriched the Few, Impoverished the Many, and Endangered the Planet (Rev. ed.). Gabriola Island, BC: New Society Publishers.
Gates, Jeff. (1998). The Ownership Solution: Toward a Shared Capitalism for the 21st Century. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.
Gates examines a variety of approaches to democratizing ownership.
Hartmann, Thom (2006). Screwed: the Undeclared War Against the Middle Class. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler.
Hawken, Paul, Amory Lovins, & L. Hunter Lovins. (1999). Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution. Boston, Little, Brown & Co.
A comprehensive review of theory and practical experiments aimed at incorporating principles of ecological sustainability into the design of economic institutions and systems. The book includes an extensive description of the pilot project taking place in the city of Curitiba, Brazil, under the leadership of Jaime Lerner and his colleagues. Go to their website at http://www.naturalcapital.org.
Korten, David C. (2009). Agenda for a New Economy: From Phantom Wealth to Real Wealth. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler.
Lietaer, Bernard & Arthur Warmoth. (1999). Designing Bioregional Economies in the Context of Globalization. In Joseph Kruth & Andrew Cohill, Eds. Pathways to Sustainability, published online by Tahoe Center for a Sustainable Future at <http://ceres.ca.gov/tcsf/pathways/chapter2.html>.
This article compares the economic sectors that lend themselves to globalization with those that need to be managed at the local level. It also discusses complementary (sometimes called "local") currencies as an important tool for regional self-reliance and self-determination, with case studies from the rapidly growing complementary currency movement.
B. (2001). The Future of Success. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.
Reich, Robert B (2007). Supercapitalism: The Transformation of Business, Democracy, and Everyday Life. New York: Alfred A. Knopf
In The Future of Success, Reich offers a compelling analysis of the economic implications of information technology, suggesting that it creates a buyers market in which a competition among sellers will lead to lower prices and economic efficiencies in all sectors and areas of economic activity. As buyers, we can get whatever we want at ever lower prices, but as sellers this leads to en endless cycle of competitive speed-up. Reich believes the only way to avoid the destructive aspects of this dynamic is to talk more responsibility for our political decisions about the design of the system within which competition operates. In particular, he advocates for the need for strong public policy action in areas such as health care, childcare, and education. Supercapitalism updates this analysis by examining the current system dynamics of capitalism, with a particular focus on the political and psychological tensions created by our conflicting identities as workers and consumers, savers/investors and citizens.
Yunus, Muhammad (with Alan Julis). (2003). Banker to the Poor: Micro-Lending and the Battle Against World Poverty. New York: Public Affairs.
An introduction to the microbanking/microcredit movement by its founder and Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus.
Hardin, Garrett. (1968). The Tragedy of the Commons. Science, 162: 1243-48.
Why individuals are tempted to abuse public resources.
(2001, Summer). The hidden commons. Yes! <http://www.futurenet.org/18Commons/rowe.htm>
Rowe, Jonathan. (2002, Autumn). The promise of the commons. Earth Island Journal, pp. 28-30.
Useful introductions to the concept of "The Commons," particularly in relation to community culture and traditions and the integrity of ecological systems.
David Bollier. Silent Theft: The Private Plunder of Our Common Wealth (Routledge, 2002)
Whose Common Future? (by the staff of the Ecologist) (New Society, 1993)
Peter Barnes. Who Owns the Sky? (Island Press, 2001)
Lawrence Lessig. The Future of Ideas: The Fate of the Commons in a Connected World (Random House, 2001)
James Boyle. Shamans, Software, and Spleens (Harvard, 1996)
Seth Shulman. Owning the Future (Houghton Mifflin)
For more about "the commons' go to onthecommons.org.
Greider, William. (1987). The Secrets of the Temple. New York: Simon & Schuster.
Why is the Federal Reserve more important in shaping the business cycle than the activity of Congress and the White House? A history of the Fed from the Carter Years, as well as an explanation of the economics of fractional reserve banking. Good gossip and good economics.
I-E: Basic History
Galbraith, John Kenneth. (1958). The Affluent Society. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
Galbraith made the case that we have too much private wealth and not enough public wealth in 1958. This situation remains true today.
Heilbroner, Robert L. (1986). The Worldly Philosophers (6th ed.). New York: Simon & Schuster (Touchstone).
A well-written historical introduction to modern economic thought, along with insights into the lives of the great economists.
Schumacher, E. F. (1973) Small Is Beautiful: Economics As If People Mattered. New York: Harper & Row.
Influenced by a Buddhist worldview, this is a classic exposition of the importance of appropriate scale in economic thinking.
Alternatives to Economic Globalization: A Better World is Possible (a Report by the International Forum of Globalization). (2002). San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler.
A systematic analysis of macropolicies that could lead to a more just world composed of sustainable economic institutions. The key elements are the decentralization of decision-making and creating more effective institutions for corporate accountability.
Anderson, Walter Truett. (1987). To Govern Evolution. Boston: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.
This book chronicles the evolutionary history that has lead homo symbolicus to become the primary influence on the future course of evolution, including a thorough review of the implications of both ecological disruption and biotechnology.
Bhagwati, Jagdish. (2004). In Defense of Globalization. New York: Oxford University Press.
Baker, Raymond W. (2005). Capitalism's Achilles Heel: Dirty Money and How to Renew the Free-Market System. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
"Achilles heel" is the complex interaction of three factors: 1) criminal activities in the global economy by individuals, corporation, and governments, 2) the increasing gap between the rich and the poor, and 3) the perversion of Adam Smith's philosophy by neoliberal economics.
Capra, Fritjof. (2004). The Hidden Connections. New York: Avon Books (©2002).
This is really two monographs. The first part is an updating of Capra's prior explorations of systems theory in which he attempts to deal specifically with the problem of human consciousness by adding the perspective of meaning to his previous three part conceptual framework: matter, form, and process. The second part is an effort to reign in the excesses of globalization by advocating sustainability as policy goal and strategies derived from a systems view of life.
Chua, Amy. (2003). World on Fire: How Exporting Free Market Democracy Breeds Ethnic Hatred and Global Instability. New York: Doubleday.
The effort to spread free market economics on a global scale combines with traditional ethnic and class divisions to create explosive consequences in the developing world.
Ed. (1994). 50 Years if Enough: The Case Against The World Bank and the
International Monetary Fund. Boston: South End Press.
Danaher, Kevin, Ed. (1996). Corporations Are Gonna Get Your Mamma: Globalization and the Downsizing of the American Dream. Monroe, ME: Common Courage Press.
Danaher is an international activist and a founder of Global Exchange. The first book documents the failure of the economic institutions established at Bretton Woods in the wake of WWII. The second book documents the increasing concentration of power and wealth that is resulting from global economic integration, but it also gives information on a variety of countervailing grass roots initiatives.
Friedman, Thomas L. (2005). The World is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
Friedman documents the economic revolution that is being driven by new technologies. We have just seen the beginnings of outsourcing and the globalization of the labor market, along with the shift of ever more forms of economic activity onto the Internet.
Greider, William. (1997). One World, Ready or Not: The Manic Logic of Global Capitalism. New York: Simon & Schuster.
Greider is a superb investigative reporter. Here, he explores the big picture of the intended and unintended consequences of the global integration of the economy under the institutional conventions of capitalism. A mixture of comprehensive reporting and speculative scenarios about where we could be headed.
Al. (1991). Earth in the Balance. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
Gore, Al. (2006). An Inconvenient Truth: The Planetary Emergence of Global Warming and What We Can Do About It. Emmaus, PA: Rodale.
Earth in the Balance offers comprehensive survey of the economic and spiritual implications of our global ecological crisis, including a proposal for a Global Marshall Plan to turn things around. An Inconvenient Truth is a companion to his slide show and film, which is more specifically focused on the ecological impact and economic imperatives of global warming.
(1995). When Corporations Rule the World. Kumarian Press.
Korten, David C. (1999). The Post-Corporate World: Life After Capitalism. San Francisco: Berrett Koehler & West Hartford, CT: Kumarian Press
1995 shows why corporate culture, including corporate models of "development," is dangerous to your-- and your planet's-- health. 1999 describes some alternatives.
Krugman, Paul. (1996). Pop Internationalism. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Krugman is the Ford International Professor of Economics at MIT. In this book he debunks the conventional wisdom that winning the game of global competition is the answer to everyone's economic problems. On the contrary, he presents a tightly argued case for the domestic economy being the primary source of wealth and well-being for most of us.
Mander, Jerry & Edward Goldsmith (Eds.). (1996). The Case Against the Global Economy: and for A Turn Toward the Local. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books
The authors in this volume collectively present a compelling case for bringing the global economy under better political control while developing effective, complementary local alternatives. This is a wide-ranging collection of excellent articles that document the damage done by to local economies by globalization under the capitalist regime, as well as several that explore alternative strategies for local communities to consider. These include such options as local currencies and community organizing around ecological and economic interests.
B. (1983). The Next American Frontier. New York: New York Times Books.
Reich, Robert B. (1991). The Work of Nations. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.
The Next American Frontier is a discussion of the challenges and opportunities of the global information economy and a critique of the wastefulness of our entrenched tradition of "paper entrepreneurialism." The Work of Nations is an economic history of the nation as an institution and an analysis of work in a global economy.
Saul, John Ralston. (2005). The Collapse of Globalism and the Reinvention of the World. Woodstock, NY: The Overlook Press.
Saul offers an intriguing and often sardonic assessment of globalism as a cultural phenomenon and a look at the cultural forces that are deconstructing neoliberal economics.
Shipler, David K. (2004). The Working Poor: Invisible in America. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.
Globalizations losers are the hard-working poor. This book documents their daily experience and some of the structural factors that create that experience.
Soros, George. (1998). The Crisis of Global Capitalism: Open Society Endangered. New York: Public Affairs.
Soros has been criticized for being overly simplistic in his analysis. However, he brings to his argument the credential of being a successful money manager and global currency speculator. Therefore, his contention that the globalizing economic regime does not take sufficient account of the public good represented by ethical human relationships and open societies deserves consideration.
Stiglitz, Joseph E. (2002). Globalization and Its Discontents. New York: W. W. Norton.
Stiglitz was the winner of the 2001 Nobel Prize in Economics and served as chairman of President Clinton's Council of Economic Advisers and chief economist for the World Bank. Therefore, his account of the failures of the "Washington Consensus" and its prescription of privatization and markets as the solution to all economic, political, and social problems is uniquely authoritative.
C. (1980). The Zero-Sum Society. New York: Basic Books.
Thurow, Lester C. (1983). Dangerous Currents. New York: Random House.
The Zero-Sum Society is an analysis of the win-lose elements in our national economy and the consequent power of interest groups to forestall the ability of government to make necessary distributional choices and to act in the interest of the whole. It contains an important discussion of a model of a national guaranteed employment program. Dangerous Currents is a systematic critique of the dangerous core assumptions plaguing the conceptual and analytic tools of conventional economics.
Toffler, Alvin. (1980). The Third Wave. New York: William Morrow.
Written as the Third Wave started to hit the shore, this is an excellent synopsis of the Second Wave and a provocative set of forecasts about the Third. His predictions were not infallible, but his assessment of the trends is suggestive and his key term is very useful.
Berry, Wendell. (1987). Home Economics. Berkeley, CA: North Point Press.
Beautifully written essays on the economics of ecology.
Daly, Herman & John B. Cobb, Jr. (1989). For the Common Good. Boston: Beacon Press.
This is two or three books in one. It includes a trenchant critique of the ecologically and motivationally limited assumptions of classical economics. It also presents a philosophical, ethical, and political arguments for a community based political economy.
Ekins, Peter. (1992). The Gaia Atlas of Green Economics. New York: Doubleday Anchor.
An excellent compendium of alternative economic theory and information.
Galbraith, John Kenneth. (1975). Money: Whence It Came, Where It Went. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
Money is a thorough historical study of that institution.
Gare, Arran E. (1995). Postmodernism and the Environmental Crisis. London & New York: Routledge.
Gare offers and excellent survey of the landscape of postmodern philosophy. He offers the intriguing suggestion that there are important ecological limits to free-wheeling projects of social deconstruction and reconstruction.
Hazel. (1991). Paradigms in Progress: Life Beyond Economics. Indianapolis, IN:
Knowledge Systems, Inc.
Henderson, Hazel. (1999). Beyond Globalization: Shaping a Sustainable Global Economy. West Hartford, CT: Kumarian Press.
The former is transformation-oriented mind dump by one of the leading alternative economists/futurists. The latter is a slender volume that offers a comprehensive set of policy guidelines for global sustainability.
Keynes, John Maynard. (1935). The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World.
Why depressions last and what government needs to do about it. Keynes theories dominated public policy until the recent advent of neo-classical economics (aka Reaganomics, voodoo economics, market fundamentalism, and in the developing world, neo-liberal economics). Keynes' work is rather abstract, but it is a classic analysis of the systems dynamics of the economy.
Robert. (1984). The Economic Illusion: The False Choice Between Prosperity
and Social Justice.
Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
Kuttner, Robert. (1999). Everything For Sale: The Virtues and Limits of Markets. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
The Economic Illusion is a slam dunk critique of laissez-faire Reaganomics that is supported by studies of European and Japanese systems that embody more effective choices than those of the U.S. Everything For Sale: Kuttner is one of our most thorough progressive analysts of economic policy. The subtitle says it all.
Mandel, Ernest. (1968). Marxist Economic Theory (2 vols.). New York: Monthly Review Press.
A compendium of relevant Marxist theory.
World Commission on the Environment and Development. (1987). Our Common Future (Brundtland Report). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
N., Richard Madsen, William M. Sullivan, Ann Swidler, & Steven M. Tipton.
(1985). Habits of the Heart. Berkeley, CA: Univ. of Calif. Press.
Bellah, Robert N., Richard Madsen, William M. Sullivan, Ann Swidler, & Steven M. Tipton. (1991). The Good Society. New York. Alfred A. Knopf
The first book traces the relationship between the loss of community and the loss of commitment. The second explores value-based institutional renewal.
Borgmann, Albert. (1992). Crossing the Postmodern Divide. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
This University of Montana philosophy professor has written an important study of postmodern economics and culture. While he is alert to the nihilistic dangers of some versions of postmodernism, his own is essentially creative, constructive, and ethical.
Geertz, Clifford. (1973). The Interpretation of Cultures. New York: Basic Books.
What is culture and how does it work?
Harvey, David. (1990). The Condition of Postmodernity. Cambridge, MA: Basil Blackwell, Inc.
An excellent Marxist critique of postmodern culture. Harvey knows about both economics and culture.
Mecca, Andrew M., Neil J. Smelser & John Vasconcellos (Eds.). (1989). The Social Importance of Self-Esteem. Berkeley, CA: Univ. of California Press.
Research of a basic issue connecting psychology and sociology.
Needleman, Jacob. (1991). Money and the Meaning of Life. New York: Doubleday Currency.
A spiritually based philosophy of money, founded on an integral view of the relationship between the sacred and the profane.
Sardello, Robert & Randolph Severson. (1983). Money and the Soul of the World. Dallas: Pegasus Foundation.
The myth of money unmasked.
Anderson, Walter Truett. (1987). To Govern Evolution. See PART II
Cahn, Edgar. (2004). No More Throw-Away People (2nd ed). Washington, DC: Essential Books. See PART I-A
Danaher, Kevin, Ed. (1996). Corporations Are Gonna Get Your Mamma: Globalization and the Downsizing of the American Dream. See PART II
Gates, Jeff. (1998). The Ownership Solution: Toward a Shared Capitalism for the 21st Century. See PART I-B
Greco, Thomas H., Jr. (2009). The End of Money and the Future of Civilization. See PART I-A
Hawken, Paul, Amory Lovins & L. Hunter Lovins. (1999). Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution. See PART I-B
Korten, David C. (2009). Agenda for a New Economy: From Phantom Wealth to Real Wealth. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler. PART I-B
Lietaer, Bernard. (2001). The Future of Money: Creating New Wealth, Work, and a Wiser World. See PART I-A
Yunus Muhammad (with Alan Julis). (2003). Banker to the Poor: Micro-Lending and the Battle Against World Poverty. New York: Public Affairs PART I-B
Berry, Wendell. (2001). In the Presence of Fear: Three Essays for a Changed World. Great Barrington, MA: The Orion Society.
In response to the climate of fear engendered by 9/11, Berry offered this manifesto for sustainable local economies.
Bornstein, David. (2004). How to Change the World: Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas. New York: Oxford University Press.
Cahn, Edgar & Jonathan Rowe. (1992). Time Dollars. Emmaus, PA: Rodale Press
A human service oriented, community building exchange system using the abundant resources of locally available energy and skills.
(1976). The Unseen Revolution. New York: Harper & Row.
Drucker, Peter. (1996). The Pension Fund Revolution. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers
From the Introduction to The Pension Fund Revolution: " No book of mine was ever more on target than The Pension Fund Revolution when it was first published (under the title The Unseen Revolution) in 1976. Drucker points out that even by the 70s, the middle class was a major stakeholder in "the ownership society." Workers, through their pension plans, are the owners of most of our industrial capital. However, it is taking the sift from defined benefit to defined contribution pension plans, topped off with proposals to privatize Social Security, to bring the implications of this transformation onto the public's radar screen. Drucker explores some revolutionary implications of this situation that remain unrealized more than a quarter century after first publication. One of these is the need to shake out the waste in what Robert B. Reich (1983) called "paper entrepreneurialism."
Elkington, John. (1998). Cannibals with Forks: the Triple Bottom Line of 21st Century Business. Gabriola Island, BC: New Society Publishers.
Businesses are beginning to recognize the need to account for their ecological and social impacts, as well as the conventional bottom line of profits for stockholders.
Fitts, Catherine Austin. (2002) "Solari & The Rise of the Rule of Law" at http://courtskinner.com/solari/Rise.htm
A solari is an investment databank and investment adviser for a place." Fitts offers a well thought out model for developing a regional, community-based investment strategy. Her model is based on an astute analysis of the unsustainable character of contemporary conventional capitalism.
George, Henry. (1879, 1979). Progress and Poverty. New York: Robert Schalkenbach Foundation.
This classic explores the thesis that the community is the source of land value, and therefore that value should be returned to the community through a "Single Tax" on land value. Private monopolization of land value, along with land speculation, are the root of the poverty which upset George 100 years ago, and which is still with us today.
H., Jr. (2001). Money: Understanding and Creating Alternatives to Legal
Greco, Thomas H., Jr. (1990). Money and Debt: A Solution to the Global Crisis (2nd ed.). Tucson, AZ: Thomas H. Greco, Jr., Publisher.
Money focuses on the concerns of individuals and small businesses that want a more user-friendly "credit commons." Money and Debt is the clearest available short explanation of the unsustainable nature of the design characteristics of conventional money and their relation to the international debt crisis. Also see his recent The End of Money and the Future of Civilization PART I-A.
Greider, William. (2003). The Soul of Capitalism: Opening Paths to a Moral Economy. New York: Simon & Schuster.
Greider has been a relentless documenter of the problems associated with capitalism and globalization. Here he offers concrete policy options for its ethical revitalization.
Harman, Willis & John Hormann. (1990). Creative Work: The Constructive Role of Business in a Transforming Society. Indianapolis, IN: Knowledge Systems, Inc.
Middle class options for a satisfying work life.
Jacobs, Jane. (1984). Cities and the Wealth of Nations. New York: Random House.
Jacobs makes the case for a regionalized economy based on the ecology of cities.
Kelly, Kevin. (1998). New Rules for the New Economy: 10 Radical Strategies for a Connected World. New York: Viking.
The Executive Editor of Wired magazine speculates about the strategies and attitudes that are necessary for success in a high tech, information-based economy.
Kelso, Louis O.
& Mortimer J. Adler. (1958). The Capitalist Manifesto. New York: Random House.
Kelso, Louis O. & Mortimer J. Adler. (1961). The New Capitalists. New York: Random House.
Kelso, Louis O. & Patricia Hetter. (1967). The Two Factor Theory. New York: Vintage.
The subtitles are: "a proposal to free economic growth from the slavery of savings" (1961) and "the economics of reality; how to turn eighty million workers into capitalists on borrowed money and other proposals" (1967). Kelso's ideas have contributed to the Employee Stock Ownership (ESOP) movement.
Korten, David C. (1999). The Post-Corporate World: Life After Capitalism. West Hartford, CT: Kumarian Press & San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler Press.
A review of the unsustainability of the current economic world order and a survey of currently evolving viable alternatives. The survey is necessarily often superficial, but it is focused around useful personal and political principles such as: "responsible freedom," "mindful markets," "economic democracy, and the "rights of living persons."
McKibben, Bill. (2007. Deep- Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future. New York: Times Books/Henry Holt Co.
Morse, Suzanne. (2004). Smart Communities: How Citizens and Local Leaders Can Use Strategic Thinking to Build a Brighter Future. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Matthew. (2003). The Two Percent Solution: Fixing America's Problems in Ways
Liberals and Conservative Can Love. New York: PublicAffairs.
Miller, Matthew. (2009). The Tyranny of Dead Ideas: Letting Go of the Old Ways of Thinking to Unleash a New Prosperity. New York: Times Books/Henry Holt.
Miller has a common sense approach to public policy that tends to incorporate the best of both progressive and conservative ideas. In The Two Percent Solution he has undertaken the daunting task of developing concrete policy solutions to intractable social problems such as health care, failing schools, and workers living in poverty based on integrating essential insights of both liberal and conservative thinking. In The Tyranny of Dead Ideas he identifies six economic cliches that prevent us from dealing with the global integration of the economy and the requirements of the sustainable use of natural resources. He then offers a hopeful scenario based on an expanded but clearly defined role of government in the economy and the benefits of good ideas developed in other societies around the globe.
Osborne, David & Ted Gaebler. (1992). Reinventing Government. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.
Entrepreneurial tools for a radical agenda in the public sector.
Redefining Wealth and Progress. New Ways to Measure Economic, Social and Environmental Change. The Caracas Report on Alternative Economic Indicators. (1990). Indianapolis, IN: Knowledge Systems, Inc. & New York: The Bootstrap Press.
New approaches to measuring wealth and well-being.
Sachs, Jeffrey D. (2005). The End of Poverty. New York: Penguin Books.
Sachs offers an autobiographical odyssey that makes this an interesting read. He combines an orthodox view of macroeconomic theory and development economics with some stunningly radical proposals for eliminating extreme poverty. The fulcrum around which this unfolds is the concept of a "poverty trap" that prevents the poor from saving and thus being able to get on a track to economic progress. He challenges wealthy countries to cease hand wringing and fund the public policies that are necessary to provide the health care, education, and physical infrastructure that are necessary for the elimination of grinding poverty by 2025.
Senge, Peter M. (1990). The Fifth Discipline. New York: Doubleday Currency.
The learning organization--an organization that learns--is the paradigmatic organization of the future. It will require personal and social disciplines and the mastery of systems thinking.
Shuman, Michael H. (1998). Going Local: Creating Self-Reliant Communities in a Global Age. New York: The Free Press.
Shuman offers case studies and strategies for communities that wish to regain a measure of economic self-determination.
Smith, J. W. (1989). The World's Wasted Wealth. Kalispell, MT: New Worlds Press.
This book offers a relentless documentation of the economic waste generated by our over-reliance on market economics and the subtle but pervasive strategies we use to adapt.
Soto, Hernando de. (2000). The Mystery of Capital: Why Capitalism Triumphs in the West and Fails Everywhere Else. New York: Basic Books.
An exploration of the cultural and legal underpinnings of successful capitalist economies based on using assets to invest in real wealth-based economic growth.
(1985). The Zero-Sum Solution. New York: Simon & Schuster.
Thurow, Lester. (1992). Head to Head. New York: William Morrow & Co.
Thurow, Lester. (2003). Fortune Favors the Bold: What We Must Do To Build a New and Lasting Global Prosperity. New York: HarperBusiness (HarperCollins),
The Zero-Sum Solution was written as the empirical evidence of the failure of Reaganomics began to be clear; it develops his themes of the need for both an aggressive industrial policy and for social and economic equity as the foundations for rebuilding a world class U.S. economy. Head to Head continues his advocacy of a coherent economic policy approach in the coming period of megacompetition between the European, Japanese, and North American trading blocs. Fortune Favors the Bold is an assessment of globalization that is basically optimistic and largely reflects an establishment point of view, but he offers insights into the fact that the global economy is essentially a knowledge economy in which material production is only one component.
Turnbull, Shann. (1975). Democratising the Wealth of Nations. Sydney: Company Directors Assn. of Australia.
A discussion of practical options for democratizing capital ownership and control by a successful businessman and accountant.
Stewart, Thomas A. (1997). Intellectual Capital: The New Wealth of Organizations. New York: Doubleday/Currency.
A treatise for managers who want to understand the economics of knowledge and information and learn how to manage valuable knowledge-workers.