The challenges to humanity posed by the digital future, the first detailed examination of the unprecedented form of power called "surveillance capitalism," and the quest by powerful corporations to predict and control our behavior. In this masterwork of original thinking and research, Shoshana Zuboff provides startling insights into the phenomenon that she has named surveillance capitalism. The stakes could not be higher: a global architecture of behavior modification threatens human nature in the twenty-first century just as industrial capitalism disfigured the natural world in the twentieth. Zuboff vividly brings to life the consequences as surveillance capitalism advances from Silicon Valley into every economic sector. Vast wealth and power are accumulated in ominous new "behavioral futures markets," where predictions about our behavior are bought and sold, and the production of goods and services is subordinated to a new "means of behavioral modification." The threat has shifted from a totalitarian Big Brother state to a ubiquitous digital architecture: a "Big Other" operating in the interests of surveillance capital. Here is the crucible of an unprecedented form of power marked by extreme concentrations of knowledge and free from democratic oversight. Zuboff's comprehensive and moving analysis lays bare the threats to twenty-first century society: a controlled "hive" of total connection that seduces with promises of total certainty for maximum profit -- at the expense of democracy, freedom, and our human future. With little resistance from law or society, surveillance capitalism is on the verge of dominating the social order and shaping the digital future -- if we let it.

Author ,
Isbn 1610395700
Genre Business & Economics
Year 2019-01-15
Pages 704
Language English
File format PDF

From 9/11 to the Snowden leaks, stories about surveillance increasingly dominate the headlines. But surveillance is not only 'done to us' – it is something we do in everyday life. We submit to surveillance, believing we have nothing to hide. Or we try to protect our privacy or negotiate the terms under which others have access to our data. At the same time, we participate in surveillance in order to supervise children, monitor other road users, and safeguard our property. Social media allow us to keep tabs on others, as well as on ourselves. This is the culture of surveillance. This important book explores the imaginaries and practices of everyday surveillance. Its main focus is not high-tech, organized surveillance operations but our varied, mundane experiences of surveillance that range from the casual and careless to the focused and intentional. It insists that it is time to stop using Orwellian metaphors and find ones suited to twenty-first-century surveillance — from 'The Circle' or 'Black Mirror.' Surveillance culture, David Lyon argues, is not detached from the surveillance state, society and economy. It is informed by them. He reveals how the culture of surveillance may help to domesticate and naturalize surveillance of unwelcome kinds, and considers which kinds of surveillance might be fostered for the common good and human flourishing.

Author David Lyon
Isbn 1509515453
Genre Social Science
Year 2018-05-21
Pages 172
Language English
File format PDF

How the blockchain—a system built on foundations of mutual mistrust—can become trustworthy. The blockchain entered the world on January 3, 2009, introducing an innovative new trust architecture: an environment in which users trust a system—for example, a shared ledger of information—without necessarily trusting any of its components. The cryptocurrency Bitcoin is the most famous implementation of the blockchain, but hundreds of other companies have been founded and billions of dollars invested in similar applications since Bitcoin's launch. Some see the blockchain as offering more opportunities for criminal behavior than benefits to society. In this book, Kevin Werbach shows how a technology resting on foundations of mutual mistrust can become trustworthy. The blockchain, built on open software and decentralized foundations that allow anyone to participate, seems like a threat to any form of regulation. In fact, Werbach argues, law and the blockchain need each other. Blockchain systems that ignore law and governance are likely to fail, or to become outlaw technologies irrelevant to the mainstream economy. That, Werbach cautions, would be a tragic waste of potential. If, however, we recognize the blockchain as a kind of legal technology that shapes behavior in new ways, it can be harnessed to create tremendous business and social value.

Author Kevin Werbach
Isbn 0262349787
Genre Computers
Year 2018-12-11
Pages 344
Language English
File format PDF

In this controversial book, Anatole Kaletsky puts the upheavals of 2007-2009 in historical and ideological perspective. He shows how the forces that precipitated the financial meltdown are now creating a new and stronger version of the global capitalist system-- one that will continue to be led and shaped by the U.S. if its businesses and politicians play their cards well. This is Capitalism 4.0, and it will change politics, finance, international relations, and economic thinking in the coming decades.

Author Anatole Kaletsky
Isbn 1610390741
Genre Business & Economics
Year 2011-06-28
Pages 448
Language English
File format PDF

Caveat venditor—let the seller beware While marketers look for more ways to get personal with customers, including new tricks with “big data,” customers are about to get personal in their own ways, with their own tools. Soon consumers will be able to: • Control the flow and use of personal data • Build their own loyalty programs • Dictate their own terms of service • Tell whole markets what they want, how they want it, where and when they should be able to get it, and how much it should cost And they will do all of this outside of any one vendor’s silo. This new landscape we’re entering is what Doc Searls calls The Intention Economy—one in which demand will drive supply far more directly, efficiently, and compellingly than ever before. In this book he describes an economy driven by consumer intent, where vendors must respond to the actual intentions of customers instead of vying for the attention of many. New customer tools will provide the engine, with VRM (Vendor Relationship Management) providing the consumer counterpart to vendors’ CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems. For example, imagine being able to change your address once for every company you deal with, or combining services from multiple companies in real time, in your own ways—all while keeping an auditable accounting of every one of your interactions in the marketplace. These tantalizing possibilities and many others are introduced in this book. As customers become more independent and powerful, and the Intention Economy emerges, only vendors and organizations that are ready for the change will survive, and thrive. Where do you stand?

Author Doc Searls
Isbn 1422184021
Genre Business & Economics
Year 2012-04-10
Pages 256
Language English
File format PDF

Our current legal system is to a great extent the product of an earlier period of social and economic transformation. From the late nineteenth century through the mid-twentieth century, as accountability for industrial-age harms became a pervasive source of conflict, the U.S. legal system underwent profound, tectonic shifts. Today, struggles over ownership of information-age resources and accountability for information-age harms are producing new systemic changes. In Between Truth and Power, Julie E. Cohen explores the relationships between legal institutions and political and economic transformation. Systematically examining struggles over the conditions of information flow and the design of information architectures and business models, she argues that as law is enlisted to help produce the profound economic and sociotechnical shifts that have accompanied the emergence of the informational economy, it is too is transforming in fundamental ways. Drawing on elements from legal theory, science and technology studies, information studies, communication studies and organization studies to develop a complex theory of institutional change, Cohen develops an account of the gradual emergence of legal institutions adapted to the information age and of the power relationships that such institutions reflect and reproduce. A tour de force of ambitious interdisciplinary scholarship, Between Truth and Power will transform our thinking about the possible futures of law and legal institutions in the networked information era.

Author Julie E. Cohen
Isbn 0190246707
Genre Law
Year 2019-09-02
Pages 368
Language English
File format PDF

Work Want Work considers in captivating detail how a logic of work has become integral to everything we do, even as the place of formal work has become increasingly precarious. With reference to sociological data, philosophy, political theory, legislation, the testimonies of workers and an eclectic mix of cultural texts – from Lucian Freud to Google, Anthony Giddens to selfies, Jean-Luc Nancy to Amy Winehouse – Pfannebecker and Smith lay out how the capitalism of globalized technologies has put our time, our subjectivities, our experiences and our desires to work in unprecedented ways. As every part of life is colonized by work without securing our livelihoods, new questions need to be asked: whether a nostalgia for work can save us, how ideas of work change conceptions of political community, how employment and unemployment alike have become malemployment, and whether the work of our desire online can be disentangled from capitalist exploitation. The biggest question, at a time when the end of work and a fully automated future are proclaimed by Silicon Valley idealists as well as by social democratic politicians and left-wing theorists, is this: how can we propose a post-work society and culture that we will actually want?

Author Mareile Pfannebecker,J. A. Smith
Isbn 178699996X
Genre Philosophy
Year 2020-03-15
Pages 192
Language English
File format PDF

In the 2020 CBC Massey Lectures, bestselling author and renowned technology and security expert Ronald J. Deibert exposes the disturbing influence and impact of the internet on politics, the economy, the environment, and humanity. Digital technologies have given rise to a new machine-based civilization that is increasingly linked to a growing number of social and political maladies. Accountability is weak and insecurity is endemic, creating disturbing opportunities for exploitation. Drawing from the cutting-edge research of the Citizen Lab, the world-renowned digital security research group which he founded and directs, Ronald J. Deibert exposes the impacts of this communications ecosystem on civil society. He tracks a mostly unregulated surveillance industry, innovations in technologies of remote control, superpower policing practices, dark PR firms, and highly profitable hack-for-hire services feeding off rivers of poorly secured personal data. Deibert also unearths how dependence on social media and its expanding universe of consumer electronics creates immense pressure on the natural environment. In order to combat authoritarian practices, environmental degradation, and rampant electronic consumerism, he urges restraints on tech platforms and governments to reclaim the internet for civil society.

Author Ronald J. Deibert
Isbn 1487008066
Genre Social Science
Year 2020-09-29
Pages 304
Language English
File format PDF

A long-time chief data scientist at Amazon shows how open data can make everyone, not just corporations, richer Every time we Google something, Facebook someone, Uber somewhere, or even just turn on a light, we create data that businesses collect and use to make decisions about us. In many ways this has improved our lives, yet, we as individuals do not benefit from this wealth of data as much as we could. Moreover, whether it is a bank evaluating our credit worthiness, an insurance company determining our risk level, or a potential employer deciding whether we get a job, it is likely that this data will be used against us rather than for us. In Data for the People, Andreas Weigend draws on his years as a consultant for commerce, education, healthcare, travel and finance companies to outline how Big Data can work better for all of us. As of today, how much we benefit from Big Data depends on how closely the interests of big companies align with our own. Too often, outdated standards of control and privacy force us into unfair contracts with data companies, but it doesn't have to be this way. Weigend makes a powerful argument that we need to take control of how our data is used to actually make it work for us. Only then can we the people get back more from Big Data than we give it. Big Data is here to stay. Now is the time to find out how we can be empowered by it.

Author Andreas Weigend
Isbn 0465096530
Genre Science
Year 2017-01-31
Pages 272
Language English
File format PDF

An Economist BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR: 'galvanises an important conversation'. The first book to call for the end of the data economy. Carissa Veliz exposes how our personal data is giving too much to big tech and governments, why that matters, and what we can do about it. Have you ever been denied insurance, a loan, or a job? Have you had your credit card number stolen? Do you have to wait too long when you call customer service? Have you paid more for a product than one of your friends? Have you been harassed online? Have you noticed politics becoming more divisive in your country? You might have the data economy to thank for all that and more. The moment you check your phone in the morning you are giving away your data. Before you've even switched off your alarm, a whole host of organisations have been alerted to when you woke up, where you slept, and with whom. Our phones, our TVs, even our washing machines are spies in our own homes. Without your permission, or even your awareness, tech companies are harvesting your location, your likes, your habits, your relationships, your fears, your medical issues, and sharing it amongst themselves, as well as with governments and a multitude of data vultures. They're not just selling your data. They're selling the power to influence you and decide for you. Even when you've explicitly asked them not to. And it's not just you. It's all your contacts too, all your fellow citizens. Privacy is as collective as it is personal. Digital technology is stealing our personal data and with it our power to make free choices. To reclaim that power, and our democracy, we must take back control of our personal data. Surveillance is undermining equality. We are being treated differently on the basis of our data. What can we do? The stakes are high. We need to understand the power of data better. We need to start protecting our privacy. And we need regulation. We need to pressure our representatives. It is time to pull the plug on the surveillance economy. Insightful, terrifying, practical: Privacy is Power highlights the implications of our laid-back attitude to data and sets out how we can take back control. If you liked The Age of Surveillance Capitalism, you'll love Privacy is Power because it provides a philosophical perspective on the politics of privacy, and offers very practical solutions, both for policymakers and ordinary citizens. 'An essential guide to one of the most pressing modern issues.' HANNAH FRY 'Essential reading for those of us who click 'agree' ten times a day.' JONATHAN WOLFF

Author Carissa Véliz
Isbn 1473583535
Genre Political Science
Year 2020-09-24
Pages 288
Language English
File format PDF

From one of the world’s leading data scientists, a landmark tour of the new science of idea flow, offering revolutionary insights into the mysteries of collective intelligence and social influence If the Big Data revolution has a presiding genius, it is MIT’s Alex “Sandy” Pentland. Over years of groundbreaking experiments, he has distilled remarkable discoveries significant enough to become the bedrock of a whole new scientific field: social physics. Humans have more in common with bees than we like to admit: We’re social creatures first and foremost. Our most important habits of action—and most basic notions of common sense—are wired into us through our coordination in social groups. Social physics is about idea flow, the way human social networks spread ideas and transform those ideas into behaviors. Thanks to the millions of digital bread crumbs people leave behind via smartphones, GPS devices, and the Internet, the amount of new information we have about human activity is truly profound. Until now, sociologists have depended on limited data sets and surveys that tell us how people say they think and behave, rather than what they actually do. As a result, we’ve been stuck with the same stale social structures—classes, markets—and a focus on individual actors, data snapshots, and steady states. Pentland shows that, in fact, humans respond much more powerfully to social incentives that involve rewarding others and strengthening the ties that bind than incentives that involve only their own economic self-interest. Pentland and his teams have found that they can study patterns of information exchange in a social network without any knowledge of the actual content of the information and predict with stunning accuracy how productive and effective that network is, whether it’s a business or an entire city. We can maximize a group’s collective intelligence to improve performance and use social incentives to create new organizations and guide them through disruptive change in a way that maximizes the good. At every level of interaction, from small groups to large cities, social networks can be tuned to increase exploration and engagement, thus vastly improving idea flow. Social Physics will change the way we think about how we learn and how our social groups work—and can be made to work better, at every level of society. Pentland leads readers to the edge of the most important revolution in the study of social behavior in a generation, an entirely new way to look at life itself.

Author Alex Pentland
Isbn 1101625570
Genre Science
Year 2014-01-30
Pages 320
Language English
File format PDF

A timely call-to-arms from a Silicon Valley pioneer. You might have trouble imagining life without your social media accounts, but virtual reality pioneer Jaron Lanier insists that we’re better off without them. In Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now, Lanier, who participates in no social media, offers powerful and personal reasons for all of us to leave these dangerous online platforms. Lanier’s reasons for freeing ourselves from social media’s poisonous grip include its tendency to bring out the worst in us, to make politics terrifying, to trick us with illusions of popularity and success, to twist our relationship with the truth, to disconnect us from other people even as we are more “connected” than ever, to rob us of our free will with relentless targeted ads. How can we remain autonomous in a world where we are under continual surveillance and are constantly being prodded by algorithms run by some of the richest corporations in history that have no way of making money other than being paid to manipulate our behavior? How could the benefits of social media possibly outweigh the catastrophic losses to our personal dignity, happiness, and freedom? Lanier remains a tech optimist, so while demonstrating the evil that rules social media business models today, he also envisions a humanistic setting for social networking that can direct us toward a richer and fuller way of living and connecting with our world.

Author Jaron Lanier
Isbn 1250196698
Genre Computers
Year 2018-05-29
Pages 128
Language English
File format PDF

Winner, 2018 Law & Legal Studies PROSE Award The consequences of big data and algorithm-driven policing and its impact on law enforcement In a high-tech command center in downtown Los Angeles, a digital map lights up with 911 calls, television monitors track breaking news stories, surveillance cameras sweep the streets, and rows of networked computers link analysts and police officers to a wealth of law enforcement intelligence. This is just a glimpse into a future where software predicts future crimes, algorithms generate virtual “most-wanted” lists, and databanks collect personal and biometric information. The Rise of Big Data Policing introduces the cutting-edge technology that is changing how the police do their jobs and shows why it is more important than ever that citizens understand the far-reaching consequences of big data surveillance as a law enforcement tool. Andrew Guthrie Ferguson reveals how these new technologies —viewed as race-neutral and objective—have been eagerly adopted by police departments hoping to distance themselves from claims of racial bias and unconstitutional practices. After a series of high-profile police shootings and federal investigations into systemic police misconduct, and in an era of law enforcement budget cutbacks, data-driven policing has been billed as a way to “turn the page” on racial bias. But behind the data are real people, and difficult questions remain about racial discrimination and the potential to distort constitutional protections. In this first book on big data policing, Ferguson offers an examination of how new technologies will alter the who, where, when and how we police. These new technologies also offer data-driven methods to improve police accountability and to remedy the underlying socio-economic risk factors that encourage crime. The Rise of Big Data Policing is a must read for anyone concerned with how technology will revolutionize law enforcement and its potential threat to the security, privacy, and constitutional rights of citizens. Read an excerpt and interview with Andrew Guthrie Ferguson in The Economist.

Author Andrew Guthrie Ferguson
Isbn 1479881473
Genre Law
Year 2017-10-03
Pages 272
Language English
File format PDF

From poisoned water and police violence in our cities, to gun massacres and hate-mongering on the presidential campaign trail, evidence that America is at war with itself is everywhere around us. The question is not whether or not it's happening, but how to understand the forces at work in order to prevent conditions from getting worse. Henry A. Giroux offers a powerful, far-reaching critique of the economic interests, cultural dimensions, and political dynamics involved in the nation's shift toward increasingly abusive forms of power. His analysis helps us to frame critical questions about what can and should be done to turn things around while we can. Reflecting on a wide range of social issues, Giroux contrasts Donald Trump's America with Sandra Bland's to understand who really benefits from politically fueled intolerance for immigrants, communities of color, Muslims, low-income families, and those who challenge state and corporate power. A passionate advocate for civil rights and the importance of the imagination, Giroux argues that only through widespread social investment in democracy and education can the common good hope to prevail over the increasingly concentrated influence of extreme right-wing politicians and self-serving economic interests. Praise for America at War with Itself: "This is the book Americans need to read now. No one is better than Henry Giroux at analyzing the truly dangerous threats to our society. He punctures our delusions and offers us a compelling and enlightened vision of a better way. America at War with Itself is the best book of the year."—Bob Herbert, Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos and former Op-Ed columnist for the New York Times "In this current era of corporate media misdirection and misinformation, America at War with Itself is a must read for all Americans, especially young people. Henry Giroux is one of the few great political voices of today, with powerful insight into the truth. Dr. Giroux is defiantly explaining, against the grain, what's REALLY going on right now, and doing so quite undeniably. Simply put, the ideas he brings forth are a beacon that need to be seen and heard and understood in order for the world to progress."—Julian Casablancas "In America at War with Itself, Henry Giroux again proves himself one of North America’s most clear-sighted radical philosophers of education, culture and politics: radical because he discards the chaff of liberal critique and cuts to the root of the ills that are withering democracy. Giroux also connects the dots of reckless greed, corporate impunity, poverty, mass incarceration, racism and the co-opting of education to crush critical thinking and promote a culture that denigrates and even criminalizes civil society and the public good. His latest work is the antidote to an alarming tide of toxic authoritarianism that threatens to engulf America. The book could not be more timely."—Olivia Ward, Toronto Star "America at War with Itself makes the case for real ideological and structural change at a time when the need and stakes could not be greater. Everyone who cares about the survival and revival of democracy needs to read this book.”—Kenneth Saltman, Professor, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Author of The Failure of Corporate School Reform Henry A. Giroux's most recent books include The Violence of Organized Forgetting and America's Addiction to Terrorism. A prolific writer and political commentator, he has appeared in a wide range of media, including the New York Times and Bill Moyers.

Author Henry A. Giroux
Isbn 0872867331
Genre Political Science
Year 2016-08-22
Pages 320
Language English
File format PDF

An investigation into the legal, political, and moral issues surrounding how the police and justice system use surveillance technology, asking the question: what are citizens of a free country willing to tolerate in the name of public safety? The police now have unparalleled power at their fingertips: surveillance technology. Seamless, persistent, even permanent surveillance is available - sometimes already deployed, sometimes waiting for the right excuse. Automatic license-plate readers allow police to amass a granular record of where people go, when, and for how long. Drones give police eyes--and possibly weapons--in the skies. Facial recognition poses perhaps the most dire and lasting threat than any other technology. Algorithms purport to predict where and when crime will occur, and how big a risk a suspect has of re-offending. Tools can crack a device's encryption keys, rending all privacy protections useless. Embedding himself with both police and community activists in locales around the country - ranging from Newark, NJ and Baltimore, MD, to Los Angeles and Oakland, CA - Jon Fasman looks at how these technologies help police do their jobs, and what their use means for our privacy rights and civil liberties. We want safe streets and fewer criminals, but we also want to protect our privacy rights and civil liberties. Fasman provides a framing for thinking through through these issues, exploring questions like: should we expect to be tracked and filmed whenever we leave our homes? Should the state have access to all of the data we generate? Should private companies? What might happen if all of these technologies are combined and put in the hands of a government with scant regard for its citizens' civil liberties? Through on-the ground reporting and vivid story-telling, Fasman explores the moral, legal, and political questions these surveillance tools and techniques pose.

Author Jon Fasman
Isbn 1541730682
Genre Computers
Year 2021-01-26
Pages 288
Language English
File format PDF

Almost a century after his untimely death in 1922, this lively and insightful new assessment explores the man Michael Collins described as ‘father of us all’ and reclaims Arthur Griffith as the founder of both Sinn Féin and the Irish Free State. Since his death when President of Dáil Éireann, Griffith’s role has often been misrepresented. Too radical for some, he was not militant enough for others. His legacy belongs to no single political party today. Colum Kenny argues that efforts to ‘other’ Griffith as ‘un-Irish’ raise uncomfortable questions about Irish identity. A dedicated activist and intellectual, as well as a skilled editor and balladeer, Griffith knew what it meant to be poor. He encouraged women to get involved in the struggle for Irish independence, and, unusually for his time, distinguished between Oscar Wilde’s private life and his work. Griffith’s complex relationships with Maud Gonne, W.B. Yeats and James Joyce are revealed here in significant new ways. The Enigma of Arthur Griffith brings the ‘father of us all’ into focus for a new generation.

Author Colum Kenny
Isbn 1785373161
Genre History
Year 2020-01-14
Pages 323
Language English
File format PDF

Every day, corporations are connecting the dots about our personal behavior—silently scrutinizing clues left behind by our work habits and Internet use. But who connects the dots about what firms are doing with all this information? Frank Pasquale exposes how powerful interests abuse secrecy for profit and explains ways to rein them in.

Author Frank Pasquale
Isbn 0674967100
Genre Law
Year 2015-01-05
Pages 319
Language English
File format PDF

This volume trace ways in which time is represented in reverse forms throughout modernist culture, from the beginning of the twentieth century until the decade after World War II. Though modernism is often associated with revolutionary or futurist directions, this book argues instead that a retrograde dimension is embedded within it. By juxtaposing the literature of Europe and North America with that of Australia and New Zealand, it suggests how this antipodean context serves to defamiliarize and reconceptualize normative modernist understandings of temporal progression. Backgazing thus moves beyond the treatment of a specific geographical periphery as another margin on the expanding field of 'New Modernist Studies'. Instead, it offers a systematic investigation of the transformative effect of retrograde dimensions on our understanding of canonical modernist texts. The title, 'backgazing', is taken from Australian poet Robert G. FitzGerald's 1938 poem 'Essay on Memory', and it epitomizes how the cultural history of modernism can be restructured according to a radically different discursive map. Backgazing intellectually reconfigures US and European modernism within a planetary orbit in which the literature of Australia and the Southern Hemisphere, far from being merely an annexed margin, can be seen substantively to change the directional compass of modernism more generally. By reading canonical modernists such as James Joyce and T. S. Eliot alongside marginalized writers such as Nancy Cunard and others and relatively neglected authors from Australia and New Zealand, this book offers a revisionist cultural history of modernist time, one framed by a recognition of how its measurement is modulated across geographical space.

Author Paul Giles
Isbn 0192566202
Genre Literary Criticism
Year 2019-02-14
Pages 336
Language English
File format PDF

Today’s “managerial” capitalism has grown hopelessly out of touch with the people it should be serving. The Support Economy explores the chasm between people and corporations and reveals a new society of individuals who seek relationships of advocacy and trust that provide support for their complex lives. Unlocking the wealth of these new markets can unleash the next great wave of wealth creation, but it requires a radically new approach—“distributed” capitalism. The Support Economy is a call to action for every citizen who cares about the future.

Author Shoshana Zuboff,James Maxmin
Isbn 1101503157
Genre Business & Economics
Year 2004-01-27
Pages 480
Language English
File format PDF

Brilliant and engagingly written, Why Nations Fail answers the question that has stumped the experts for centuries: Why are some nations rich and others poor, divided by wealth and poverty, health and sickness, food and famine? Is it culture, the weather, geography? Perhaps ignorance of what the right policies are? Simply, no. None of these factors is either definitive or destiny. Otherwise, how to explain why Botswana has become one of the fastest growing countries in the world, while other African nations, such as Zimbabwe, the Congo, and Sierra Leone, are mired in poverty and violence? Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson conclusively show that it is man-made political and economic institutions that underlie economic success (or lack of it). Korea, to take just one of their fascinating examples, is a remarkably homogeneous nation, yet the people of North Korea are among the poorest on earth while their brothers and sisters in South Korea are among the richest. The south forged a society that created incentives, rewarded innovation, and allowed everyone to participate in economic opportunities. The economic success thus spurred was sustained because the government became accountable and responsive to citizens and the great mass of people. Sadly, the people of the north have endured decades of famine, political repression, and very different economic institutions—with no end in sight. The differences between the Koreas is due to the politics that created these completely different institutional trajectories. Based on fifteen years of original research Acemoglu and Robinson marshall extraordinary historical evidence from the Roman Empire, the Mayan city-states, medieval Venice, the Soviet Union, Latin America, England, Europe, the United States, and Africa to build a new theory of political economy with great relevance for the big questions of today, including: - China has built an authoritarian growth machine. Will it continue to grow at such high speed and overwhelm the West? - Are America’s best days behind it? Are we moving from a virtuous circle in which efforts by elites to aggrandize power are resisted to a vicious one that enriches and empowers a small minority? - What is the most effective way to help move billions of people from the rut of poverty to prosperity? More philanthropy from the wealthy nations of the West? Or learning the hard-won lessons of Acemoglu and Robinson’s breakthrough ideas on the interplay between inclusive political and economic institutions? Why Nations Fail will change the way you look at—and understand—the world.

Author Daron Acemoglu,James A. Robinson
Isbn 0307719235
Genre Business & Economics
Year 2012-03-20
Pages 544
Language English
File format PDF