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The Future of Capitalism: Facing the New Anxieties

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  298 ratings  ·  52 reviews
Deep new rifts are tearing apart the fabric of Britain and other Western societies: thriving cities versus the provinces, the highly skilled elite versus the less educated, wealthy versus developing countries. As these divides deepen, we have lost the sense of ethical obligation to others that was crucial to the rise of post-war social democracy. So far these rifts have be ...more
Hardcover, 248 pages
Published October 4th 2018 by Allen Lane
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Heidi Only the occasional examples of prosperous countries - it's more about the policies and trends worldwide than comparative status of individual trends.…moreOnly the occasional examples of prosperous countries - it's more about the policies and trends worldwide than comparative status of individual trends. (less)
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3.87  · 
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 ·  298 ratings  ·  52 reviews


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Justus
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I found this to be a pretty terrible book. It has the kernel of some good -- or at least interesting -- ideas but it does such a poor job of putting forward arguments in favor of its suggestions that I end up feeling like I wasted my time reading this. It doesn't help that few of his suggestions seem practical and the few times he addresses practicality he throws up his hands.

It also veers off into tangents that seem totally unrelated to "The Future of Capitalism". When you discover that the gen
...more
Marks54
Jan 25, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a wonderful book, even better than I expected. The author is a respected and well published Oxford economist. The intent of the book is to provide a thoughtful overview of the problems facing global capitalism and even offer some possible fixes, perhaps in conjunction with his retirement thoughts. The result is a complex and well done integration of economics, politics, history, philosophy, ethics, and culture that spans continents and crosses multiple levels of analysis with ease. All o ...more
Dan Graser
Dec 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What Oxford professor Paul Collier has written here is not only a very involved work of economics but also a deeply felt expression of ethics surrounding the current socio-political climate and how that has tainted and marginalized rational discussion of purely economic issues. He frames the idea of confronting the new anxieties surrounding capitalism and within the world's most successful capitalist countries as:

Restoring Ethics - operating at the State, Firm, Family, and World
Restoring the Inc
...more
Daniel
Jan 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Collier is an Economics Professor at Oxford. He pointed out that the current problems of capitalism stem from assuming the existence of the unreal Economic Man and promotes Utilitarianism. As a result, profits are maximised, manufacturing and back end jobs are moved overseas, machines are substituted for human labour, the cities get richer, leaving behind the provinces. The educated pulls ahead from the uneducated. The elite starts to base their self esteem on their skills and not their national ...more
Mehrsa
Jan 15, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Collier makes some excellent books in here, but the idea needed some time to mature and become clear. The book offers a hodgepodge of problems and a few hodgepodge solutions. Problems go from feminism and the decline of marriage to offshore tax havens. Basically, lack of morality infuses the market and the family and it must be recovered. How? Through communities. I enjoyed a few sections here and there, but that story just doesn't work as an indictment or even a description of capitalism. He do ...more
Pinar
Nov 26, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: economics, audiobook
hızlı okunan, kolay anlaşılır, ekonomi dışında her konuya değinen, içeriğin büyük bir kısmı Noah Harari'den derlenmiş hissi veren, sonuç itibariyle kapitalizmden başka bir gelecek görmeyen, solcularla nazileri eleştiren, ama kapitalizmin de böyle gitmeyeceğini söyleyen, çözüm olarak "etik kapitalizm" diyen bir kitap. yazar kitabı politikacılar için yazmamış, vatandaşlara yazmış. kitap içindeki tezlerin daha tam oturmadığını geliştirilmesi gerektiğini söylüyor. ama bence gayet havada kalan iyi ni ...more
Michael Duncan
Feb 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overall, I’d recommend this as a necessary view from an economist on the deeper reasons why some Western first-world societies are experiencing shifts toward nativism and populism, and what is causing the widening gap between rich and poor. Collier does this by cogently explaining how excesses in both liberal and conservative thought have led us here.

The corrective policy recommendations, though good in theory, are so far out of the political norms of the past three-plus decades as to feel hopel
...more
Scott
Jan 18, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an interesting and thoughtful book. Paul's comments about belonging resonate with me. But I remain uncertain about the duty of rescue, especially in the context of his other comments. He essentially attacks victimhood, the notion that victims somehow deserve certain treatment and rights, yet he ascribes duties for us to rescue people under certain circumstances too. Rescue seems to be related to saving people's lives, while victimhood involves more "optional" assistance, I suppose. Given ...more
D.  St. Germain
Apr 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In The Future of Capitalism, Paul Collier, a development economist most known for his work The Bottom Billion, tackles the rise of poverty and the "grim rifts" that have begun to define the politics of his own country, the United Kingdom.

Economists who study developing countries have particularly interesting insights into how policies can work or not work at alleviating poverty and creating inclusive growth. Collier is interested in a new pragmatic politics that rejects both ideology and populi
...more
Kursad Albayraktaroglu
Mar 18, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics
Too academic, dense and basically has nothing to do with its title or the subjects listed in the blurb. I was expecting a cogent analysis of the current state of capitalism and the way forward. What I got is an incoherent collection of essays on ethics, society, and nothing on capitalism in the first half of the book. Skip this one, and leave it to social science grad students.
Zach
Jan 31, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Solid 3.5. The ideas are very interesting; the preamble and diagnosis are well covered and the book spends a lot of time rehashing.
Colby
The diagnosis is better than the prescription
John McDonald
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an important book which outlines a format for capitalism that, if practiced, likely would relieve any number of conflicts and dysfunctions that worldwide societies and economies face. It's a longshot but a longshot worth debating and, with some fine tuning, implementing.

Although the author, Paul Collier is a Nobel Laureate from Oxford University, this is not a scholarly work. It is, rather, the effort of a scholar tasked with global duties and advisory functions to her Majesty's governme
...more
Germán
Feb 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Clear, concise, and packed with ideas.
Drtaxsacto
Mar 05, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The Future of Capitalism tells you very little about that subject. If one were cynical they might call the book Herbert Crowley redux; Crowley was the New Republic editor and FDR apologist who argued in an essay that “government is different” - where he propounded the odd notion that when government does something self interest flies away.

There is a lot in this book - unfortunately a good deal of it suffers from two maladies - it misquotes many key figures or ideas and at the same time it comes
...more
Christopher Neal
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Paul Collier’s The Future of Capitalism – Facing the New Anxieties
An economist’s prescription to challenge the charlatan extremes ruling broken societies

This is Paul Collier’s best book to date. It follows his other very good ones, notably The Bottom Billion, a watershed analysis of poverty published in 2007 that has influenced development aid approaches to the world’s lowest-income, most fragile states, not just at the World Bank, where Collier was once research director, but across Western don
...more
Emil Gigov
I approached the book with much interest having listened to an LSE podcast lecture delivered by Sir Paul Collier. The introduction to the book suggested it will tackle some important issues of the day such as the increasing economic divergence of major cities and the countryside. Indeed Sir Paul makes a number of interesting points, such as describing well the economic gains of agglomeration. However, his views on tax, and specifically his tendency to justify maximum tax extraction suggested a l ...more
Heidi
Convincing, even where my views differ. He calls this the politics of the "Hard Center" and is strongly anti-idealogue and pragmatic. He emphasizes ethical states, ethical firms and ethical families as the center for regaining social trust and individual investment. He points out that the 'economic individual' as historically utilized in politics and economics was a psychopath and most humans aren't. Historic capitalism has swept most needs under the rug of consumption. However increases in cons ...more
Stephen
Jan 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is the age for a book like this. The economy no longer seems to be working. Society no longer seems to be working. Politics no longer seems to be working. This book looks at why this might be so. The first chapter provides an analysis of where it all seems to have gone wrong and I have to admit that I found it quite convincing.

According to the author, we are living in a world that has been created, and distorted, by the Rawlsians and the Utilitarians. The result is a monstrosity. A Rawlsian
...more
Popup-ch
Paul Collier takes a step back from his usual battleground of third-world countries and looks at how modern-day western countries have moved in a disconcerting direction, towards increased alienation, reduced social mobility and ever widening inequalities, on a geographical as well as social level. He looks at 'broken cities', and uses himself as an example. He grew up in Sheffield - the archetypal British broken city, where everything has gone pear-shaped since the steel works were exposed to c ...more
Jeffrey
Apr 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5. I read the Kindle version. Collier is British so most of his examples are from the UK. The book has several thoughtful points. He stated several times that he is not a Marxist and I thought he doth protest too much. His prescriptions nearly all involve direct intervention by the state, taxes and or transfer payments. So, I either disagreed or looked askance at most of his prescriptive elements.

However, much of his analysis was thoughtful and occasionally quite insightful. He has a great de
...more
Anthony Risi
Jan 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book does a great job of explaining and examining the new anxieties brought about by modern day capitalist societies. How did we go from a largely united nation with common goals to one that is heavily divided along social, political, and economic lines? Collier raises interesting points about how both Left and Right extremes have lost sight of governing in favor of arguing ideology to no end. One of my favorite quotes of the book is, ..."the path of ideology will lead us to unresolvable so ...more
MDVinTO
Apr 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mahin
Mar 21, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am reticent to review The Future of Capitalism (and books on economics, in general) if only because I haven't formally studied economics. With that said, I believe that capitalism has proven to be the best economic system, that it has elevated billions out of poverty (and is continuing to do so), that humanity is living in the greatest period of prosperity it has ever known. It is true, however, that many have been left behind. Some believe that flatlining wages and decreased social mobility r ...more
Nathaniel Irvin
The thesis of this work could be boiled down to this: "Capitalist societies are the most beneficial kind of societies, but they need to find common goals in order to benefit everyone."

Collier argues convincingly for the idea that Western countries need to build healthy national and communal identities in order to make capitalism ethical again. Strong families and inclusive patriotism are key parts of this vision. He argues less convincingly for the idea that top earners should pay higher taxes
...more
Cary Giese
“We are social beings, neither economic man, nor altruistic saints.

“Ethical capitalism, built on our shared values, and pragmatic reasoning is the thesis of the book!”

“Shared Identity becomes the foundation for far-sighted reciprocity.”

“We must restore the vastly more demanding reciprocal obligations to each other that once rose from shared identities.”

That is the book!

His “how” requires shared obligations to each other without losing the dynamism of capitalism!

Good idea! Quite a goal. But
...more
Scott Alisoglu
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An economist that gets it, Collier deftly addresses what far too many in his profession have avoided through philosophical rigidity and self delusion: economic principles are not akin to the (mostly) immutable laws of hard science. This is not a call to kill capitalism; it is a plea to reconsider outdated paradigms and incentivize ethical behavior, not the least of which involves an all important emphasis on reciprocal obligation.

Pragmatism, ethics, and communal norms have been stripped out of
...more
Don Weymouth
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Although this is not an entertaining book, it is a real standout in politics and economics for this age. Most books these days state their theories, come up with stories to support their theories and then conclude that their theories are, in fact, reality.

Paul Collier took the right approach, to review various social, economic and political issues going on in the last 50 years, evaluated the pros and cons and then came out with the problems currently being experienced now. He then outlines a nu
...more
Max Stone
My impression is that Paul Collier is trying to do with the left-right debate what he did with the Sachs-Easterly debates on aid for developing nations: be the respected voice in the middle that can be relied upon to evaluate the evidence rather than interpreting everything through the lens of a strong ideology. I thought he did a good job (not a great job, but a pretty good job) of doing that for aid to developing nations in The Bottom Billion.

In this book he really struggles. In the beginning
...more
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Goodreads Librari...: Combine Editions 2 15 Oct 07, 2018 09:30PM  
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Paul Collier, CBE is a Professor of Economics, Director for the Centre for the Study of African Economies at the University of Oxford and Fellow of St Antony's College. He is the author of The Plundered Planet; Wars, Guns, and Votes; and The Bottom Billion, winner of Estoril Distinguished Book Prize, the Arthur Ross Book Award, and the Lionel Gelber Prize.