In a wide-ranging study, Guillén provides a wealth of insights about how we can get the best from social change.

An acclaimed thought leader proposes a new way of looking at shifting demographic patterns.

Guillén is a professor of management at the Wharton School, and his book 2030: How Today’s Biggest Trends Will Collide and Reshape the Future of Everything demonstrated his ability to tackle big-picture issues. Here, the author expands on themes he has touched on previously, looking at the interaction of increased longevity and accelerating technological trends. He argues that the idea of a linear life of compartmentalized stages is no longer appropriate and that concepts like retirement are now doing more harm than good. He proposes an alternative: a postgenerational workforce of “perennials,” where older people are encouraged to work well into their 70s alongside their younger colleagues. The author rejects the idea that older people are too set in their ways to adapt, and he points to evidence showing that, when given the opportunity, they can use their experience and maturity to add value to any business wise enough to hold on to them. At the same time, older people who remain in the workforce offer huge marketing opportunities for companies looking to expand their product lines in everything from cosmetics to cars. Educational institutions should also be willing to embrace older students, since there is necessity for continual reskilling to accommodate new technologies and trends. The author acknowledges that all this will require a new mindset. Younger people must be willing to accept older people in the workplace even while they themselves grapple with the idea of lifelong learning. Equally, older people need to accept that change, both technological and social, will be a constant in their lives. This is not easy, but the upside is that many more people have the opportunity to lead lives that are personally rewarding and socially fulfilling.

In a wide-ranging study, Guillén provides a wealth of insights about how we can get the best from social change.

Pub Date: Aug. 22, 2023

ISBN: 9781250281340

Page Count: 272

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: May 5, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2023


Striking research showing the immense complexity of ordinary thought and revealing the identities of the gatekeepers in our...

A psychologist and Nobel Prize winner summarizes and synthesizes the recent decades of research on intuition and systematic thinking.

The author of several scholarly texts, Kahneman (Emeritus Psychology and Public Affairs/Princeton Univ.) now offers general readers not just the findings of psychological research but also a better understanding of how research questions arise and how scholars systematically frame and answer them. He begins with the distinction between System 1 and System 2 mental operations, the former referring to quick, automatic thought, the latter to more effortful, overt thinking. We rely heavily, writes, on System 1, resorting to the higher-energy System 2 only when we need or want to. Kahneman continually refers to System 2 as “lazy”: We don’t want to think rigorously about something. The author then explores the nuances of our two-system minds, showing how they perform in various situations. Psychological experiments have repeatedly revealed that our intuitions are generally wrong, that our assessments are based on biases and that our System 1 hates doubt and despises ambiguity. Kahneman largely avoids jargon; when he does use some (“heuristics,” for example), he argues that such terms really ought to join our everyday vocabulary. He reviews many fundamental concepts in psychology and statistics (regression to the mean, the narrative fallacy, the optimistic bias), showing how they relate to his overall concerns about how we think and why we make the decisions that we do. Some of the later chapters (dealing with risk-taking and statistics and probabilities) are denser than others (some readers may resent such demands on System 2!), but the passages that deal with the economic and political implications of the research are gripping.

Striking research showing the immense complexity of ordinary thought and revealing the identities of the gatekeepers in our minds.

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-374-27563-1

Page Count: 512

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: Sept. 3, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2011


A clearly delineated guide to finally eradicate poverty in America.

A thoughtful program for eradicating poverty from the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Evicted.

“America’s poverty is not for lack of resources,” writes Desmond. “We lack something else.” That something else is compassion, in part, but it’s also the lack of a social system that insists that everyone pull their weight—and that includes the corporations and wealthy individuals who, the IRS estimates, get away without paying upward of $1 trillion per year. Desmond, who grew up in modest circumstances and suffered poverty in young adulthood, points to the deleterious effects of being poor—among countless others, the precarity of health care and housing (with no meaningful controls on rent), lack of transportation, the constant threat of losing one’s job due to illness, and the need to care for dependent children. It does not help, Desmond adds, that so few working people are represented by unions or that Black Americans, even those who have followed the “three rules” (graduate from high school, get a full-time job, wait until marriage to have children), are far likelier to be poor than their White compatriots. Furthermore, so many full-time jobs are being recast as contracted, fire-at-will gigs, “not a break from the norm as much as an extension of it, a continuation of corporations finding new ways to limit their obligations to workers.” By Desmond’s reckoning, besides amending these conditions, it would not take a miracle to eliminate poverty: about $177 billion, which would help end hunger and homelessness and “make immense headway in driving down the many agonizing correlates of poverty, like violence, sickness, and despair.” These are matters requiring systemic reform, which will in turn require Americans to elect officials who will enact that reform. And all of us, the author urges, must become “poverty abolitionists…refusing to live as unwitting enemies of the poor.” Fortune 500 CEOs won’t like Desmond’s message for rewriting the social contract—which is precisely the point.

A clearly delineated guide to finally eradicate poverty in America.

Pub Date: March 21, 2023

ISBN: 9780593239919

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: Nov. 30, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2023

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