Author: Kai-Fu Lee, Chen Qiufan
Recommended by: Anna Essén, Program Director of Accelerating Digital Innovation at SSE Executive Education.
“Thoughtful book on how AI can change the way we live and interact. I do not usually like dramatic descriptions of the future – I prefer discussions based on how AI is actually used now, which is often quite far from utopian or dystopian future scenarios. However, this book is nuanced and imaginative. It contains short stories that illustrate possible scenarios – but also that the future is not predetermined at all, it is up to us humans to decide how AI is developed and used.”
REGENERATION – ENDING THE CLIMATE CRISIS IN ONE GENERATION
Author: Paul Hawken
Recommended by: Carl Lindeborg, Program Director of Managing Professional Services at SSE Executive Education.
“We live in a world that’s faced with giant global challenges as well as amazing opportunities. We’re all at the center of a complex system whose impact on us, as societies and companies and as leaders and individuals, is expanding. In my opinion, we can no longer stand around wondering if there’s a problem that needs to be addressed. We must act now and transform the old paradigm into something new – and we need to act fast using a holistic approach.
Paul Hawken, journalist and author of several New York Times bestsellers, including The Next Economy and The Ecology of Commerce, released a new book in September: Regeneration – Ending the Climate Crisis in One Generation. In this book, he takes a holistic approach in talking about the global challenges that face our world and identifies practical and systematic solutions that all of us are able to implement right away, both as individuals and as organizations.
He elegantly and insightfully weaves together different threads and presents concrete solutions that will help us to not only solve the climate crisis but also shrink social divides, increase biodiversity and create a world in which people can thrive. Every idea includes inspiring stories and pictures of people and organizations that inspire and act as examples. At the end of the book, he gives readers a toolbox that they can use at home, with their team or with their organization about how each person, based on their individual situation and circumstances, can become an even bigger part of the solution and path forward.
This book has truly inspired both me and my team, and I believe it’s thanks to Paul’s ability to write with one foot in the gravity of the situation that we find ourselves in and the other foot in the hope that we will be able to solve the crisis and with it, create a new and evolved world. A perfect book to get the juices flowing over the holidays and on into the new year, and one that offers new ways to make a difference.”
THE POWER OF US
Author: Jay van Bavel, Dominic Packer
Recommended by: Emma Stenström, Program Director of Leadershift at SSE Executive Education.
”In short, this book is about how our social identities affect us. Of course, this does not come as news, but it is easy to forget. And it is a little bit uncomfortable to hear. Are we not self-governing individuals? Are we so influenced by the groups we belong to?
The answer is: yes, we are. Our social identities affect our thoughts, opinions, feelings, behaviors, and decision-making. An example: if a mathematical problem contains something that is politically charged, such as the connection between crime and immigration, our political opinion can knock out our mathematical ability. In an experiment, skilled mathematicians were found to have almost fifty percent greater risk of miscalculation, if they had a different opinion than the mathematically correct answer.
This book is full of that kinds of examples and studies. Life is not quite the same after reading it. Focus shifts from the individual to the context. ‘We’ comes before ‘I’. ‘Ours’ is more important than ‘mine’. We are all chameleons, who adapt to the group, and there are consequences for how we live our lives. And how we build organizations and societies.
The most important message, however, is that we all are many. Do not think that someone you meet only has one, but remember that we all have multiple identities. And look actively for people who are different than you; it broadens your perspectives.”
Author: Marcus Aurelius (new Swedish edition translated by Mikael Johansson in 2021, with introduction and comments by the translator)
Recommended by: Robert Nobel, of Executive Management Program and other General Management programs at SSE Executive Education.
“During one of his many campaigns, the Roman emperor, Marcus Aurelius (who lived between the years 121-180), began to write down his thoughts. The result became this immortal collection of thoughts on how one finds spiritual strength and thus a way to connect to the world, both outside and inside of oneself. For nearly 2,000 years, Marcus Aurelius’s Meditations has inspired and helped people in all stages of life. It’s a timeless piece about morality, life and death, and many still consider it to be one of the most important texts within Western literature.”
FUNDAMENTALS OF STRATEGY
Author: Whittington, Regnér, Angwin, Johnson and Scholes
Recommended by: Robert Nobel, Program Director at SSE Executive Education.
“Patrick Regnér is a Professor of Strategic Management at the Stockholm School of Economics and is one of the co-authors of Exploring Strategy, the world’s most used textbook about strategy at university level. This version of the book is aimed at business leaders and others who would like an overview of the fundamental concepts, theories and tools surrounding strategy and the work that goes into it. This edition addresses a number of issues, including the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic with example and insights from a wide range of international businesses.”
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