Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Rastapherian’s Tales

A collection of short stories, narrated in a lively and effortless manner, these delve into the life of the urban child in various everyday settings. The tales are built around interesting episodes like organising a birthday party, encounters with visiting cousins and uncles, plotting a “dare” with friends to have a go at a neighbour’s Harley, being touched by the warm gestures of friends and relatives... In many ways, the world of the urban child that emerges is — reassuringly — like it ever was, despite the frenzied consumer image that marketeers would have us believe. Many of the stories come with powerful messages, subtle and at times even oblique.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Dragonfly Effect

Proven strategies for harnessing the power of social media to drive social change
Many books teach the mechanics of using Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube to compete in business. But no book addresses how to harness the incredible power of social media to make a difference. The Dragonfly Effect shows you how to tap social media and consumer psychological insights to achieve a single, concrete goal. Named for the only insect that is able to move in any direction when its four wings are working in concert, this book

•Reveals the four "wings" of the Dragonfly Effect-and how they work together to produce colossal results
•Features original case studies of global organizations like the Gap, Starbucks, Kiva, Nike, eBay, Facebook; and start-ups like Groupon and COOKPAD, showing how they achieve social good and customer loyalty
•Leverage the power of design thinking and psychological research with practical strategies
•Reveals how everyday people achieve unprecedented results-whether finding an almost impossible bone marrow match for a friend, raising millions for cancer research, or electing the current president of the United States
The Dragonfly Effect shows that you don't need money or power to inspire seismic change.

What Works

In a lively and counterintuitive exploration of success stories from across the globe, an award-winning journalist takes the reader on a fascinating journey in pursuit of the flimsy difference between triumph and failure

Drawing life lessons from the great ideas put to work on every continent?from America to Europe, from Africa to Asia and Australasia?these stories are as surprising as they are inspiring. This book explores such questions as Why do some initiatives take off while others flounder? How have some communities managed to achieve so much while others struggle? What distinguishes the good companies from the bad? What lessons can we learn from the surprisingly well-ordered Mumbai community made famous by Slumdog Millionaire? Why have Canadian manners helped Whistler become the most popular ski resort in North America? How has Zurich developed the world's most admired anti-drug policies? And how has Hong Kong used gambling profits to help its residents enjoy the greatest level of economic freedom on the planet? Readers will be entertained, informed, and enlightened as to how to achieve successes of in their businesses, communities, and lives

Monday, February 7, 2011

Fault Lines

Raghuram Rajan was one of the few economists who warned of the global financial crisis before it hit. Now, as the world struggles to recover, it is tempting to blame just a few greedy bankers who took irrational risks and left the rest of the world to foot the bill. In Fault Lines, Rajan argues that serious flaws in the global economy are also to blame, and warns that a potentially more devastating crisis awaits if they are not fixed. Rajan shows how the individual choices — made by bankers, government officials, and ordinary homeowners — that collectively brought about the economic meltdown were rational responses to a flawed global financial order in which the incentives to take on risk are incredibly out of step with the dangers those risks pose. He traces the deepening fault lines in a world overly dependent on the indebted American consumer to power economic growth and stave off global downturns. Alongside, America’s growing inequality and thin social safety net create tremendous political pressure to encourage easy credit and keep job creation robust. In the process these put the rest of the world in deeper financial peril, even as the economic choices of countries like Germany, Japan, and China place undue burden on America to get its policies right. In Fault Lines, Rajan outlines the hard choices that the world needs to make to ensure greater stability and restore lasting prosperity. Importantly, he shows how India’s development experience is different from that of other recent fast-growing economies. Despite India’s recent successes, however, he argues that India has to act decisively in certain areas to maintain its people-oriented growth. If India does so and continues on its unique development path, it will be a compelling role model, demonstrating how it is possible to grow rapidly even while having a flourishing democracy