The undoing project: A friendship that changed the world

Author: Michael Lewis

Recommended by: Gustav Almqvist, researcher at the Stockholm School of Economics and Program Director of the Executive Management Program at SSE Executive Education.

“This past spring, we lost one of our time’s greatest thinkers in the field of social sciences. The 2002 recipient of Sweden’s Riksbank’s Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Science. The Israeli psychologist, Daniel Kahneman (1934-2024).

Kahneman authored innumerable scientific articles – the most ground-breaking in the 1970s and 80s – and several best-selling books. In them, he explained the psychology behind the cognitive biases to which we humans sometimes subscribe, and the way in which they impair our judgements and decisions. One of his main conclusions was that we seldom think completely rationally, and it is a theory that has changed today’s study of economics.

Kahneman’s life and his research work are both worthy of attention – which is why I’d like to recommend, as your summer reading, a book that looks at both of these areas. The book I have chosen to recommend is, however, neither Kahneman’s latest Noise: A Flaw in Human Judgement nor his most widely read work Thinking, Fast and Slow. It’s a Kahneman book that wasn’t even written by Kahneman.

In The undoing project: A friendship that changed the world (first published in 2016) the multiple award-winning American author, Michael Lewis, tells the story of Kahneman’s legendary research partnership with his compatriot and psychology colleague, Amos Tversky (1937-1996). It was a partnership characterized by intellectual brilliance and professional creativity, but also by deep friendship and, sometimes, rivalry.

Yes, Lewis’s book will teach you about Kahneman’s research. But what it primarily does is depict a unique friendship and reminds us of the importance of partnership leading to great discoveries.

Small things like these

Author: Claire Keegan

Angelika Lindstrand - SSE Executive Education

Recommended by: Angelika Lindstrand, Academic Director at SSE Executive Education and SSE MBA and researcher at the Stockholm School of Economic.

“This book is a short novel about a coal merchant in Ireland in the 1980s. During the course of his day-to-day work, he encounters the conflict between a society in need of reformation and a church that still controls people’s behavior. The story focuses on personal responsibility, the complexity of social structures, and the results of going against the prevailing consensus. This is a beautiful and hopeful novel.



“Diamant Salihu is a Swedish journalist and nonfiction author. Salihu”s work focuses on the parallel society of gangs and their influence on what most Swedes consider our common social contract. His perspective and knowledge opens a door to a closed world and provides insight to an issue that affects all parts of the Swedish society. His books are great reads and I am especially impressed by the research behind them. The books are unfortunately not available in English yet, so I recommend this podcast in which Salihu talks about his work and his views on the subject.”





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