FT & McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award

August 12, 2015 5:33 pm

Business Book Award longlist: must-read titles of 2015

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Theme of technology edges ahead of workplace and capitalism to dominate this year’s must-read titles

The promise and perils of technology dominate the longlist for this year’s Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award.

The 15 titles include Ashlee Vance’s Elon Musk, a biography of the charismatic entrepreneur behind the Tesla electric car, Digital Gold by Nathaniel Popper, on the development of the virtual currency bitcoin, and The Rise of the Robots, by Martin Ford, about jobs and automation.

Every longlisted book and winner since 2005

Business book of the year 2015

Read more about this year’s longlisted titles and every other book honoured during the 11-year history of the award

Only one technology book has won the prize before — The Everything Store, about Amazon, in 2013. But this year’s tech contenders also include: How Music Got Free, Stephen Witt’s story of how online piracy nearly brought down the recording industry; Losing the Signal, by Jacquie McNish and Sean Silcoff, about the rise and fall of BlackBerry; and Steve LeVine’s investigation of how battery science is advancing, The Powerhouse.

Also in the running this year is Anne-Marie Slaughter’s keenly awaited Unfinished Business, due out next month. Slaughter’s book about how to narrow the gender gap is certain to reignite debate about the alternative vision laid out by Sheryl Sandberg, author of 2013 finalist Lean In.

Economists again feature heavily. Mihir Sharma offers a prescription for India’s revival in Restart. Barry Eichengreen compares the lessons from the Great Depression and the recent global credit crisis in Hall of Mirrors. Gernot Wagner and Martin Weitzman examine another global crisis — that of climate change — in Climate Shock.

Ten years after Freakonomics, one of the first popular books on behavioural economics, made the final of the first FT book award, Richard Thaler explains how the discipline evolved in Misbehaving .

Meanwhile, George Akerlof and Robert Shiller turn their attention to economic trickery and the way free markets allow us to be manipulated and deceived in Phishing for Phools, coming next month. Also in the “debunking” category is management professor Jeffrey Pfeffer’s Leadership BS, due in September, about how to fix the misfiring leadership development industry.

Black Horse Ride, Ivan Fallon’s investigation of how Lloyds, the UK bank, became embroiled in the banking crisis, joins a long line of books spawned by the credit crunch.

Finally, for anyone looking for clues about next year’s prize, Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner lay out how to improve our ability to predict the future in their forthcoming book, Superforecasting.

The judges will select a shortlist of up to six books on September 22. The £30,000 prize will be awarded on November 17. To find out more about the judging panel, rules and past winners, please visit: www.ft.com/bookaward.

Covers Book Titles Author/s Publisher
****US & UK COVER. Phishing for Phools: The Economics of Manipulation and Deception by George A. Akerlof and Robert J. Shiller, Princeton University Press For Business Book of the year awards.
Phishing for Phools: The Economics of Manipulation and Deception
George Akerlof and Robert Shiller Princeton University Press
***UK COVER ONLY. Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioural Economics by Richard H. Thaler, Allen Lane/Penguin Press (UK); W. W. Norton (US)
Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioural Economics (UK)


Richard Thaler Allen Lane/ Penguin Press
***US COVER ONLY. Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioral Economics by Richard H. Thaler, Allen Lane/Penguin Press, W. W. Norton
Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioral Economics (US)
Richard Thaler W.W. Norton
***UK COVER ONLY. Elon Musk: How the billionaire CEO of SpaceX and Tesla is shaping our future, Ashlee Vance, Virgin Books (UK); Ecco (US).For Business Book of the year awards.
Elon Musk: How the Billionaire CEO of SpaceX and Tesla is Shaping Our Future (UK)
Ashlee Vance Virgin Books
**US COVER ONLY."Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future, Ashlee Vance, Virgin Books (UK); Ecco (US) ". For Business Book of the year awards.
Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future (US)
Ashlee Vance Ecco
***US & UK COVER. Climate Shock: The Economic Consequences of a Hotter Planet by Gernot Wagner and Martin L. Weitzman, Princeton University Press. For Business Book of the year awards.
Climate Shock: The Economic Consequences of a Hotter Planet
Gernot Wagner and Martin Weitzman Princeton University Press
***UK COVER ONLY. How Music Got Free: What happens when an entire generation commits the same crime?, Stephen Witt, The Bodley Head/Penguin Random House, Viking. For Business Book of the year awards.
How Music Got Free: What Happens When an Entire Generation Commits the Same Crime? (UK)

Stephen Witt The Bodley Head/ Penguin Random House
**US COVER ONLY. How Music Got Free: The End of an Industry, The Turn of the Century, and The Patient Zero of Piracy, Stephen Witt, The Bodley Head/Penguin Random House, Viking. For Business Book of the year awards.
How Music Got Free: The End of an Industry, The Turn of the Century, and The Patient Zero of Piracy (US)
Stephen Witt Viking
**US & UK COVER. Unfinished Business: Women, Men, Work, Family by Anne-Marie Slaughter, Oneworld Publications, Random House For Business Book of the year awards.
Unfinished Business: Women Men Work Family
Anne-Marie Slaughter Oneworld Publications/ Random House
**US & UK COVER. Restart: The Last Chance for the Indian Economy by Mihir S. Sharma, Vintage Books, Random House India For Business Book of the year awards.
Restart: The Last Chance for the Indian Economy
Mihir Sharma Vintage Books/ Random House India
**UK COVER ONLY. "The Rise of the Robots - Technology and the Threat of Mass Unemployment by Martin Ford, Oneworld Publications, Basic Books. For Business Book of the year awards.
The Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of Mass Unemployment (UK)
Martin Ford Oneworld Publications
**US COVER ONLY. Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future by Martin Ford, Oneworld Publications, Basic Books For Business Book of the year awards.
Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future (US)
Martin Ford Basic Books
***US & UK BOOK JACKET, Hall of Mirrors: The Great Depression, The Great Recession, and the Uses - and Misuses - of History by Barry Eichengreen, Oxford University Press
Hall of Mirrors: The Great Depression, The Great Recession, and the Uses - and Misuses - of History
Barry Eichengreen Oxford University Press
**US BOOK JACKET. The Powerhouse: Inside the Invention of a Battery to Save the World by Steve LeVine, Viking For Business Book of the year awards. (no UK publisher)
The Powerhouse: Inside the Invention of a Battery to Save the World
Steve LeVine Viking
**US AND UK COVER . Losing the Signal: The Untold Story Behind the Extraordinary Rise and Spectacular Fall of Blackberry by Jacquie McNish and Sean Silcoff, Flatiron/Macmillan. For Business Book of the year awards.
Losing the Signal: The Untold Story Behind the Extraordinary Rise and Spectacular Fall of Blackberry
Jacquie McNish and Sean Silcoff Flatiron/ Macmillan
**UK COVER ONLY. Digital Gold: The Untold Story of Bitcoin by Nathaniel Popper, Allen Lane/Penguin Press, Harper/HarperCollins For Business Book of the year awards.
Digital Gold: The Untold Story of Bitcoin (UK)
Nathaniel Popper Allen Lane/ Penguin Press
***US COVER ONLY. Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money by Nathaniel Popper, Allen Lane/Penguin Press, Harper/HarperCollins. For Business Book of the year awards.
Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money (US)
Nathaniel Popper Harper/ HarperCollins
**US COVER ONLY. Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction by Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner, Random House Books, Crown Publishers/Penguin Random House LLC. For Business Book of the year awards.
Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction (US)
Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner  

Crown Publishers/ Penguin Random House

**UK COVER ONLY. Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction by Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner, Random House Books, Crown Publishers/Penguin Random House LLC. For Business Book of the year awards.
Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction (UK)
Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner Random House Books
**US & UK BOOK JACKET. Leadership BS: Fixing Workplaces and Careers One Truth at a Time by Jeffrey Pfeffer, HarperBusiness/HarperCollins. For Business Book of the year awards.
Leadership BS: Fixing Workplaces and Careers One Truth at a Time
Jeffrey Pfeffer HarperBusiness/ HarperCollins
**UK & US BOOK JACKET - Black Horse Ride: The Inside Story of Lloyds and the Banking Crisis, by Ivan Fallon. UK & US COVER (both the same). Publisher: The Robson Press
Black Horse Ride: The Inside Story of Lloyds and the Banking Crisis
Ivan Fallon The Robson Press/ Biteback Publishing

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