Globalization was supposed to bring economic benefits to people all over the world; while it brought improvements to some regions it has caused as nearly many challenges. The impact of a more interconnected world is the focus of many of the most important business books being published this spring.

There has been no bigger winner in the global economy in recent years than China, and the ramifications of that country’s tremendous rise is the subject of a number of spring titles, including two that hit our top 10 list. Dambisa Moyo’s Winner Take All: China’s Race for Resources and What It Means for the World examines China’s increasingly aggressive efforts to secure natural resources in all parts of the world. China’s need to find more raw materials to meet its growing energy appetite reflects the maturation of its economy as it moves from simply a destination for cheap labor to the world’s largest economy. What this transformation will mean for America is examined in The End of Cheap China: Economic and Cultural Trends That Will Disrupt the World by Shaun Rain. China is not the only country enjoying strong growth; investors and businessmen are looking at prospects in the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) countries, and a tour of the emerging economies is the subject of Ruchir Sharma’s Breakout Nations: In Pursuit of the Next Economic Miracles.

Economic inequality the world over has become a major topic of debate, and in Inequality and Instability: A Study of the World Economy Just Before the Great Crisis, economist James K. Galbraith, son of the renowned economist John Kenneth Galbraith, discusses how financial systems around the world are driving the growing divide between the haves and have-nots. Two decades ago BP was running out of reserves. The turnaround plan implemented by CEO John Browne featured a string of acquisitions, cost cutting, and cutting corners, and while employees and regulators warned of the problems, no government took on the responsibility of challenging this global corporate citizen; all these issues are examined in Abrahm Lustgarten’s Run to Failure: BP and the Making of the Deepwater Horizon Disaster.

Taking a more positive look at the world economy is Philip Auerswald who, in Coming Prosperity: How Entrepreneurs Are Transforming the Global Economy, argues that entrepreneurs in BRIC countries will provide economic benefits not only in their own countries but to the entire world economy.

Despite the challenges of inflation and globalization, Robert Pollin outlines how the U.S. can create more good jobs in Back to Full Employment. New college graduates are finding it a particularly difficult time to find jobs, but there are success stories. In I Got My Dream Job and So Can You: 7 Steps to Creating Your Ideal Career After College, Pete Leibman describes how he landed a job with the Washington Wizards and then took advantage of that opportunity to advance.

To keep up with changes in today’s fast-paced business world, it takes more than one person to make decisions. How companies and organizations can tap into their employees’ knowledge and ideas is the subject of Thomas Davenport’s Judgment Calls: Twelve Stories of Big Decisions and the Teams That Got Them Right. And with Americans facing economic pressures from all areas, how to find a balanced life is explored in How Will You Measure Your Life? by Clayton M. Christensen et al.

PW’s Top 10: Business

Winner Take All: China’s Race for Resources and What It Means for the World

Dambisa Moyo. Basic Books, Apr.

The End of Cheap China: Economic and Cultural Trends that Will Disrupt the World

Shaun Rain. John Wiley, Mar.

Breakout Nations: In Pursuit of the Next Economic Miracles

Ruchir Sharma. W.W. Norton, Apr.

Inequality and Instability: A Study of the World Economy Just Before the Great Crisis

James K. Galbraith. Oxford University Press, Mar.

Run to Failure: BP and the Making of the Deepwater Horizon Disaster

Abrahm Lustgarten. W.W. Norton, Mar.

Coming Prosperity: How Entrepreneurs Are Transforming the Global Economy

Philip Auerswald. Oxford University Press, Apr.

Back to Full Employment

Robert Pollin. MIT Press, Mar.

I Got My Dream Job and So Can You: 7 Steps to Creating Your Ideal Career After College

Pete Leibman. Amacom Books, Mar.

Judgment Calls: Twelve Stories of Big Decisions and the Teams That Got Them Right

Thomas H. Davenport, Brook Manville, and Laurence Prusak. Harvard Business Review Press, Apr.

How Will You Measure Your Life?

Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth, and Karen Dillon. Harper, Apr.

Business Listings


Click Millionaires: Work Less, Live More with an Internet Business You Love by Scott Fox (May 1, hardcover, $22, ISBN 978-0814431917). An e-commerce expert teaches weary corporate warriors and aspiring entrepreneurs how to trade the 9–5 job they hate for an online business they love.

High-Tech, High-Touch Customer Service: Inspire Timeless Loyalty in the Demanding New World of Social Commerce by Micah Solomon (May 1, hardcover, $23, ISBN 978-0814417904) reveals inside secrets of successful customer service initiatives, from Internet startups to venerable brands, and shows how a variety of companies can turn casual customers into fervent supporters who will spread the word, online and off.

I Got My Dream Job and So Can You: 7 Steps to Creating Your Ideal Career After College by Pete Leibman (Mar., paper, $15.95, ISBN 978-0814420201). When he was only 21 years old, Pete Leibman landed his “dream job,” working in the front office of the NBA’s Washington Wizards. Now he shares his simple system for career success.

In the Shadow of the Dragon: The Global Expansion of Chinese Companies—And How It Will Change Business Forever by Winter Nie, William Dowell, Abraham Lu (May 1, hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-0814431702) is a meticulously researched exposé of the most competitive companies in China, featuring interviews with Chinese business leaders and original case studies.

Power of Reputation: Strengthen the Asset That Will Make or Break Your Career by Chris Komisarjevsky (Apr. 1, hardcover, $22, ISBN 978-0814417973) offers businesspeople an action plan, with real-world examples, for creating the kind of reputation that generates trust, inspires confidence, and paves the way for lasting success.

Basic Books

Winner Take All: China’s Race for Resources and What It Means for the World by Dambisa Moyo (Apr. 10, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-0465028283). Controversial and bestselling economist Moyo tackles one of the most vital geopolitical stories of our time: China’s aggressive global crusade to secure natural resources.


Confessions of a Microfinance Heretic: How Microlending Lost Its Way and Betrayed the Poor by Hugh Sinclair (July 9, hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-1609945183). A microfinance industry insider offers a shocking account of corruption and betrayal of the poor by an industry supposedly dedicated to doing good. Microloans do more harm than good because of predatory lending and profit pressure.

Owning Our Future: The Emerging Ownership Revolution by Marjorie Kelly, foreword by David C. Korten (June 4, paper, $19.95, ISBN 978-1605093109). Veteran business journalist Kelly finds an alternative economic system, free from battering from financial hurricanes, in emerging new forms of ownership that combine the flexibility and freedom of traditional private enterprise with a focus on long-term benefits and the common good.


Just Run It!: Running an Exceptional Business Is Easier Than You Think by Dick Cross (Apr. 3, hardcover, $24.95, ISBN 978-1-937134-00-6). Most business owners lack the ability to combine the nuts and bolts of operating a business effectively day in and day out with the bigger picture of business success. After transforming more than 100 underperforming companies into high-achievement enterprises, Cross devised a simple formula to help small and medium-sized enterprises reach the next level of success.

Career Press

Panic Free Job Search: Unleash the Power of the Web and Social Networking to Get Hired by Paul Hill (Mar. 1, paper, $15.99, ISBN 978-1601632036). Advances in technology make the way jobs are found and filled online distinctly different from just a few years ago. Based on leading Internet strategies, Hill shows how to get hired by using social media to tap into the hidden job market.

Center Street

Work Happy: What Great Bosses Know by Jill Geisler (June 5, hardcover, $24.99, ISBN 978-1455507436). With more than five million downloads of her iTunesU podcasts, industry-wiz Geisler is the go-to expert on what it takes to make good employees into great managers.

Chelsea Green

Local Dollars, Local Sense: How to Shift Your Money from Wall Street to Main Street and Achieve Real Prosperity by Michael Shuman (Feb. 2, paper, $17.95, ISBN 978-1603583435). An economist, attorney, author, and entrepreneur at the forefront of building local economies delivers a thorough overview of how to invest locally instead of on Wall Street, explaining the options and obstacles, and profiling the investors who have paved the way; the Post Carbon Institute’s Community Resilience series.

Chronicle Books

Rent vs. Own by Jane Hodges (Mar. 21, paper, $18.95, ISBN 978-1452102535) may be the first real estate advice book not to assume buying is the best; experts in the field of finance and real estate break down the pros and cons of buying and renting in this market.

Columbia Univ. Press

The Best Business Writing 2012, edited by Dean Starkman, Martha Hamilton, Ryan Chittum, and Felix Salmon (June 19, paper, $18.95, ISBN 978-0231160735) selects the year’s most compelling and informative essays that, together, capture a critical moment in business and finance; from the Columbia Journalism Review Books series.

Crown Business

American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company by Bryce G. Hoffman (Mar. 13, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-0307886057) is a definitive account of what may be the greatest turnaround in business history, by the award-winning Detroit News journalist.

Free Press

Better, Stronger, Faster: The Myth of American Economic Decline by Daniel Gross (Mar. 20, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-1451621280). From the author of Dumb Money, a positive assessment of the recovery and the longer-term health of the American economy.

The 4 Disciplines of Execution: How to Realize Your Most Wildly Important Goals by Chris McChesney and Sean Covey (Apr. 10, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-1451627053). Meeting strategic goals is the greatest challenge in business today. Aligning the organization’s work teams with a company’s most important objectives is a never-ending battle. In addition, keeping teams engaged and focused on the top goals is critical. The authors break down the four ways to achieve these goals.


The Good Food Revolution: Growing Healthy Food, People, and Communities by Will Allen (May 10, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-1592407101). A pioneering urban farmer and MacArthur “genius award” winner points the way to building a new food system that can feed—and heal—broken communities.


The Honest Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone—Especially Ourselves by Dan Ariely (May 16, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-0062183590). The behavioral economist and New York Times bestselling author of The Upside of Irrationality and Predictably Irrational examines the contradictory forces that drive us to cheat and keep us honest.


How Will You Measure Your Life? by Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth, and Karen Dillon (Apr. 25, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-0062102416). The world’s leading thinker on innovation and New York Times bestselling author of The Innovator’s Dilemma delivers an unconventional book of inspiration and wisdom for achieving a fulfilling life.

Harvard Business Review Press

Judgment Calls: Twelve Stories of Big Decisions and the Teams That Got Them Right by Thomas H. Davenport, Brook Manville, and Laurence Prusak (Apr. 1, hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-1422158111) highlights 12 stories of organizations that have successfully tapped into the diverse perspectives and deep knowledge of their people to build organizational decision making that gets it right.

Kogan Page

The Digital Wars: Apple, Microsoft, Google, and the Battle for the Internet by Charles Arthur (Apr. 28, paper, $19.95, ISBN 978-0749464134) offers a study of the dynamic among leaders in the Internet industry to see what the future of the field will hold.


Abnormal Returns: Winning Strategies from the Frontlines of the Investment Blogosphere by Tadas Viskanta (June 1, hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-0071787109). The founder and editor of the popular blog Absolute Returns provides strategies that show investors how to tune out the noise, focus on important issues, and set realistic expectations to improve their investing performance.

The Chinese Way to Wealth and Prosperity: 8 Timeless Strategies for Achieving Financial Success by Michael Justin Lee (July 2, hardcover, $22, ISBN 978-0071788724) provides eight ancient Chinese principles of success and how any investor can use them to build wealth.

A Creator’s Guide to Transmedia Storytelling: How to Captivate and Engage Audiences Across Multiple Platforms by Andrea Phillips (May 4, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-0071791526). From a transmedia pioneer, here is the first major how-to marketing strategy guide for using multiplatform storytelling to enhance brand value.

The Crowd-Funding Revolution: How to Raise Venture Capital Using Social Media by Kevin Lawton and Dan Marom (May 25, hardcover, $35, ISBN 978-0071790451). The game-changing, Internet-based method now replacing traditional venture capital funding and how investors and entrepreneurs can begin connecting, networking, and raising capital.

Heads: Business Lessons from an Executive Search Pioneer by Russell S. Reynolds Jr. and Carol E. Curtis (Apr. 27, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-0071795005). From the man who “invented the executive search,” Reynolds’s inspiring behind-the-scenes story of building his headhunting empire from scratch (then losing it and rebuilding it afresh) chronicles the evolution of the executive search, offering perspective on the state of the industry today.

Return on Influence: The Revolutionary Power of Klout, Social Scoring, and Influence Marketing by Mark Schaefer (Mar. 16, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-0071791090) discusses the marketer’s field guide to measuring customers’ online clout and using it to build long-term loyalty.

MIT Press

Back to Full Employment by Robert Pollin (Mar. 9, hardcover, $14.95, ISBN 978-0262017572). Full employment used to be an explicit goal of economic policy in most of the industrialized world, and economist Robert Pollin argues that the U.S. should implement policies to get more people back to work.

The Clash of Generations: Saving Ourselves, Our Kids, and Our Economy by Laurence J. Kotlikoff and Scott Burns (Mar. 16, hardcover, $21.95, ISBN 978-0262016728). The United States is bankrupt, flat broke. Thanks to accounting that would make Enron blush, America’s insolvency goes far beyond what our leaders are disclosing. Kotlikoff and Burns document our six-decade, off-balance-sheet, unsustainable financing scheme.

Guardians of Finance: Making Regulators Work for Us by James R. Barth, Gerard Caprio Jr., and Ross Levine (Feb. 17, hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-0262017398). The authors, all economists, argue that the financial meltdown of 2008–2009 was no accident; it was negligent homicide. They show that senior regulatory officials around the world knew or should have known that their policies were destabilizing the global financial system, had years to process the evidence that risks were rising, had the authority to change their policies—and yet chose not to act until the crisis had fully emerged.

Economics After the Crisis: Objectives and Means by Adair Turner (Mar. 23, hardcover, $24.95, ISBN 978-0262017442). The global economic crisis of 2008–2009 seemed a crisis not just of economic performance but also of the system’s underlying political ideology and economic theory. But a second Great Depression was averted, and the radical shift to New Deal–like economic policies predicted by some never took place.

The Prosperity of Vice: A Worried View of Economics by Daniel Cohen, trans. by Susan Emanuel (Feb. 10, hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-0262017305) guides us through history, describing the European discovery of the “philosopher’s stone”: the possibility of perpetual growth. But the consequences of addiction to growth are dire in an era of globalization. It is still possible, Cohen argues, that the cyberworld will create a new awareness of global solidarity.

W.W. Norton

Breakout Nations: In Pursuit of the Next Economic Miracles by Ruchir Sharma (Apr. 9, hardcover, $26.95, ISBN 978-0393080261). An expert on global markets offers a jargon-free tour through the new landscape for emerging economies.

Run to Failure: BP and the Making of the Deepwater Horizon Disaster by Abrahm Lustgarten (Mar. 26, hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-0393081626). It was Big Oil’s nightmare moment, and the dominoes began falling years before the well was drilled.

Oxford Univ. Press

Coming Prosperity: How Entrepreneurs Are Transforming the Global Economy by Philip Auerswald (Apr. 1, hardcover, $29.95, ISBN 978-0199795178). Over the next 25 years, global economic growth will come overwhelmingly from previously poor countries like China, India, and Brazil. In rich countries, this “rise of the rest” scenario strikes fear into many observers, but Auerswald argues that the inclusion of the majority of the world’s population in the global economy is a source of unprecedented opportunity.

Inequality and Instability: A Study of the World Economy Just Before the Great Crisis by James K. Galbraith (Mar. 1, hardcover, $29.95, ISBN 978-0199855650). In the press, at the Capitol, on Wall Street, and around the world, people are waking up to the dangers of inequality. In his new work, leading economist James K. Galbraith demonstrates that finance is the driver converting inequality into instability.

Why Capitalism? by Allan H. Meltzer (Mar. 1, hardcover, $21.95, ISBN 978-0199859573). A financial historian and authority on economic theory, Meltzer answers that only capitalism maximizes both growth and individual freedom. Unlike socialism, capitalism is adaptive, not rigid—private ownership of the means of production flourishes wherever it takes root, regardless of culture.

Palgrave Macmillan

The Reckoning: Debt, Democracy, and the Future of American Power by Michael Moran, foreword by Nouriel Roubini (Mar. 22, hardcover, $27, ISBN 978-0230339934). From Roubini’s foreword: “Michael Moran understands what few Americans do: that we have reached a tipping point in global history that will fundamentally change the planet.... America will find it very difficult to adjust to its new place as a peer, rather than a dominant nation.”

Penguin Press

The Idea Factory: Bell Labs and the Great Age of American Innovation by Jon Gertner (Mar. 15, hardcover, $29.95, ISBN 978-1594203282) is a sweeping, atmospheric history of Bell Labs that highlights its unparalleled role as an incubator of innovation and birthplace of the century’s most influential technologies.

Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power by Steve Coll (May 1, hardcover, $36, ISBN 978-1594203350). The two-time Pulitzer Prize winner goes deep inside ExxonMobil Corp, the largest and most powerful private corporation in the United States.

Princeton Univ. Press

Finance and the Good Society by Robert J. Shiller (Mar. 1, hardcover, $24.95, ISBN 978-0691154886). The reputation of the financial industry could hardly be worse than it is today in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. Bestselling economist Shiller argues that, rather than condemning finance, we need to reclaim it for the common good.

Prometheus Books

The Einstein of Money: The Life and Timeless Financial Wisdom of Benjamin Graham by Joe Carlen (July 24, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-1616145576) relates the life of Benjamin Graham—a mentor to Warren Buffett—examining Graham’s techniques for generating wealth while telling the colorful story of his amazing career and personal life.


Financial Turmoil in Europe and the United States: Essays by George Soros (Feb., hardcover, $19.99, ISBN 978-1610391528). The legendary financier reflects on key problems in the deepening global economic crisis since publication of his international bestseller The New Paradigm for Financial Markets: The Crash of 2008.

Unconvinced: How Politics Lost the American People by Drew Westen (May 1, hardcover, $27.99, ISBN 978-1586489106). The author of The Political Brain shows how failed economics and failed leadership have corroded Americans’ faith in politics across the political spectrum—and what it would take to begin to rebuild it.

Rodale Books

Making Good: Finding Meaning, Money, and Community in a Changing World by Dev Aujla and Billy Parish (Feb. 8, paper, $15.99, ISBN 978-1605290782). Two prominent young entrepreneurs offer a seminal handbook for navigating the emerging economy, finding opportunity in crisis, and building successful and fulfilling careers.

Money Rules: The Simple Path to Lifelong Security by Jean Chatzky (Feb. 23, paper, $12.99, ISBN 978-1609618605). A must-have manifesto on money with more than 90 wealth-building rules from the bestselling author and finance guru.

Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group

Securing Your Financial Future: Complete Personal Finance for Beginners by Christopher Smith (Mar. 1, paper, $19.95, ISBN 978-1442214224). When it comes to personal finance, the rules may have changed, but the time-tested principles of sound personal financial management haven’t. Those starting out on their paths to financial security just need to learn them better and apply them earlier than ever before—ideally, right from the start.

Running Press

The Real Mad Men: The Renegades of Madison Avenue and the Golden Age of Advertising by Andrew Cracknell (Feb. 7, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-0762440900). A visual history of key major ad campaigns during the 1950s and 1960s and the people responsible for them.

Square One Publishers

How to Start a Business & Ignite Your Life: A Simple Guide to Combining Business Wisdom with Passion by Ernesto Sirolli, Ph.D. (Mar. 1, paper, $16.95, ISBN 978-0757003547). By one of the world’s leading consultants on the topic of economic development, this book presents an easy-to-follow formula for success so that anyone with an idea for a business can pursue his or her dream.

St. Martin’s Press

The Real Crash: America’s Coming Bankruptcy—and How to Protect Yourself from the Collapse by Peter Schiff (Apr. 19, hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-1250004475). The New York Times bestselling financial author and economist warns of the inevitable bankruptcy facing America and lays out not only how we got here but what we can do about it.

Sterling Publishing

Theodore Roosevelt, CEO: 7 Principles to Guide and Inspire Modern Leaders by Alan Axelrod (Mar. 6, hardcover, $22.95, ISBN 978-1402784835). The newest in Alan Axelrod’s celebrated CEO series examines Theodore Roosevelt, typically ranked among the top five U.S. presidents by historians. Following in the vein of his popular Winston Churchill, CEO and Gandhi, CEO, Axelrod provides an unprecedented look at this much-studied figure.

Thomas Nelson

One Big Thing: Discovering What You Were Born to Do by Phil Cooke (June 23, hardcover, $22.99, ISBN 978-1595554840) helps readers discover the one thing that drives them, inspires their passion, and separates them from the pack, then how to use it to revolutionize their business or ministry and change the world.

Turner Publishing

Becoming China’s Bitch: And Nine More Catastrophes We Must Avoid Right Now by Peter D. Kiernan (Feb. 28, hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-1618580054) is a new look at 10 impending disasters—in politics, health care, energy, immigration, and more—that threaten America’s future, and the uncompromising solutions that will prevent these critical issues from materializing.

Univ. of Nebraska Press

River in Ruin: The Story of the Carmel River by Ray A. March (Apr. 1, hardcover, $24.95, ISBN 978-0803238343). The thin ribbon of the Carmel River in California is just 36 miles long and no wider in most places than a child can throw a stone. The river’s story is an epic tale of exploitation, development, and often unwitting degradation reaching back to the first appearance of Europeans.


The End of Cheap China: Economic and Cultural Trends That Will Disrupt the World by Shaun Rain (Mar., hardcover, $24.95, ISBN 978-1-118-17206-3). China’s days as a low-cost production center are numbered, and Americans face a deepening threat to their accustomed way of life and consumption. The author exposes the causes behind this and how businesses can succeed in the changing global marketplace.

The Millennium Wave: Prosper (and Profit!) in a Future of Accelerating Change by John Mauldin (July, hardcover, $29.95, ISBN 978-0-470-04356-1). Bestselling author Mauldin believes that the next decade will be the single largest period of transformation in human history and gives investors the strategies necessary to profit from these changes.


1501 Ways to Reward Employees by Bob Nelson (Mar. 27, paper, $15.95, ISBN 978-0761168782). This edition combines the best of the 1994 and 2005 editions, with new examples of employee rewards throughout. Most important are new sections for dealing with emerging workforce trends: the rising presence of contingent workers (freelancers and perma-lancers), the Millennium generation (those who came of age post-2000 and have an entirely different set of workplace values and expectations), and a globalized workforce.


Love Works: Seven Timeless Principles for Effective Leaders by Joel Manby (May 22, hardcover, $19.99, ISBN 978-0310335672). After winning Americans’ admiration with his appearance on Undercover Boss, Manby shares his wisdom on servant leadership. In an environment that is typically ruled with pride and arrogance, he brings an integrity that elevates everyone around him.