1/Emergence by Steven Johnson
As a concept emergence is everywhere. It is also one of nature’s biggest mysteries. Understanding emergence opens up a new way to think about many contemporary problems like city planning, media production & social media products.
2/Meat Racket by Christopher Leonard
Like telecommunications, the meat industry in the U.S is also an oligopoly. Tyson with chicken pioneered industrialized farming & changed both the American diet and farming forever. The cheaper the chicken, the worse the farmer’s life gets. Eyeopening read.
3/Trust me I am lying by Ryan Holiday
Incentives matter. The lines between a blogger and journalist no longer matter. This means the chaos of online news business can be manipulated by clever individuals. It’s a freighting view of what was yet to come.
4/The Third Revolution by Elizabeth Economy
China is more complex than Alibaba & Tencent’s stories. To understand China and it’s position in global politics & economics a much needed nuanced view is attempted quite successfully in this book. A must-read for the times of trade war.
5/Shenzhen Superstar by Johan Nylander
Speed Matters. And for Shenzhen, speed is its fuel & differentiation. But speed also overshadows the amazing innovation and experiments that are happening.
6/Startup Nation by Dan Senor & Saul Singer
A small nation under a constant edge has proven its mettle and has created breakthroughs in the global tech scene. A great read to get an entry view into Israel’s technology landscape.
7/Bottled and Sold by Peter Glieck
Michigan scandal has given bad rep for tap water. But there is no reason for buying bottled water in developed nations in most municipalities. There is no real science in ionized water molecules. A delightful read in understanding the history of public and private water.
8/Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari
It’s a hard pill to swallow, but it is a needed one. The understanding Yuval has about the history and the outrageous clarity in his narrative has blown my mind. This is not a one time read. Its a reference to start looking at the human journey for anyone curious about anything.
9/Influence by Team Robert Cialdini
Persuasion of mass behavior is more probable and predictable than perceived. It’s deployed quite often. Increasing sales to get yourself promoted this book will help you plan better.
10/Loonshots by Safi Bahcall
There are many thought paradigms to look at the problem of innovation. Looking at it as a systems problem, of maintaining equilibrium can give you a new insight on how to tackle it.
11/Big Brands and Big Trouble by Jack Trout
Be the leader or become a leader in. Battle the perception, not the product. With size comes scale but so do problems of scale. To solve the problem of perception for big brands you will need rules to manage the big image.
12/China’s Disruptors by Edward Tse
China is not just a mere copy cat. Their tenacity is shown in complex navigation and execution across sector and success stories. But it’s a less complex picture painted with a thick brush of positive light.
13/The Lessons of History by Will & Ariel Durant
A great book to travel across the through-line of history. It’s not the final truth, but it’s a version worth exploring with an open mind. This is a true testament of what books offer, in some cases insights collected over a lifetime.
14/The Walmart Effect by Charles Fishman
The modern retail machine is full of amazing innovations. It is often easy to forget that the current behemoth is also an incumbent at once. This book helps you understand the current retail industry through the lens of valuable history.
15/Entertainment Industry Economics by Harold L Vogel
The most important aspect of creative businesses is both the reason why people get into it and also not get into it. From books to movies all media businesses follow the power law. Find all things interesting in media business through the lens of an analyst.
We are living in a network information economy. And its created a new class of network monopolies called platforms. Understanding how platforms work is vital to understanding the current and future of this economy.
17/Leonardo by Walter Isaacson
In history, you will encounter figures who will feel like forces of nature came together to create a being to advance its own evolution. Leonardo is one of them. If there was a manifestation of collusion of art and science its Leonardo. He is a force of nature, created by nature to study nature and advance it. Read it to learn the power of genuine curiosity.
18/4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss
We are in a leverage economy powered by technology. So one can use a combination of this leverage and automation techniques to experiment and optimize one’s life. Even if it is not at Tim’s level one can use these techniques to solve and gain time from one’s own unnecessary self interruptions.
19/The Industries of The Future by Alec Ross
Ahead of its time, with great stories that narrate the coming future new sectors. Very needed for the Sovereign individual times we will be encountering.
20/Alexander the Great by Pierre Briant
One of the most interesting figures in history. So much of the world is tied together with the history. Alexander’s world is way beyond the imagination of his times. Fact — Aristotle was the mentor of Alexander.