Below are some of David’s favorite books, classics he considers to be vital reading to any young person or futurist seeking to make sense of our evolving modern condition.
The Fourth Revolution Summary: Quite simply, this book is well worth the time. After reading it, not only will you want to go learn more about the people and ideas brought up by the authors but you will never look at politics in quite the same way. The book provides a good theoretical basis for understanding and predicting the future.
Democracy in America Alexis de Tocqueville
Summary: Review pending
Start-Up Nation Dan Senor & Saul Singer Summary: Not only will this book expand your horizons and provide you with the ramp to go off on a million different tangents of google searches, but it will fill you with a sense of pride and can-do spirit. While a case-study in the innovative and business-savvy environment for young Israeli start-up companies, the book teaches some wider lessons about building an innovation-oriented culture that are applicable to any business-minded entity. While reading the book, you get a sense of the authors’ profound emotional connection and love for the Jewish people along with the business insights that form the premise of this book.
The Vertical Farm Dickson Despommier
Summary: A concise and accessible introduction to the future of farming and food production. Written by a Columbia professor, “The Vertical Farm” discusses important issues surrounding this relatively new technology including the need problems with traditional farming, the feasibility of vertical farming, and the impact it can have on us. Overall, this is a good though-provoking read.
More than Good Intentions Dean Karlan and Jacob Appel Summary: This book was certainly an eye-opener and it made me question how each aspect of an organization’s operation played into its overall efficiency. The researchers write directly from their first-hand experiences examining the daily lives of the global poor and the commercial/aid organizations that exist to serve them. The distribution of everything from antiretrovirals to fertilizers to bank accounts are discussed.
The Death and Life of Great American Cities Jane Jacobs
Summary: This book is considered a canonical piece of contemporary urban literature. Through her astute observation of nearly every detail of urban life, Jane Jacobs works out an understanding of the city as an organism. If you read this book, the way in which you think of cities and the way they work will be forever changed.
The Big Sort Bill Bishop Summary: Review pending
The Geography of Bliss Eric Weiner Summary: Eric Weiner is a the type of author you would know you just want to meet at a dinner party. His writing is both engaging and entertaining, full of punchlines, funny caricatures, and hilarious personal stories peppered with his profoundly astute observations on living the happy life. The Geography of Bliss masterfully combines both great escapist, adventure reading with though-provoking life wisdom.
A Race for the Future Mike Gonzalez Summary: Review pending
The Cycles of American History Arthur Schlesinger Jr. Summary: “Cycles” is a mostly great but dense read; certainly not for the faint of heart or casual reader. Most of the talk about historiography and the periodicity of history comes in the first few chapters. Overall, the book has no one clear trajectory but hits on a number of different issues and evaluates everything from the rise of Cold War to the effects of the 25th amendment. I highly recommend this to history buffs, conspiracy theorists, personality cultists, policy geeks, or constitutionalists.
Ten Books on Architecture Vitruvius Summary: This book give you an appreciation for the tradition of Western architecture that surrounds us in our daily lives. The book also challenges readers to think of space and volume in terms of proportions, rather than measured amounts and sizes. Overall, the book is a very well-formulated philosophy on the theory of living well in the context of the spaces humans build for themselves.
Animal Farm George Orwell Summary: This book should be mandatory reading for all 7th graders! This classic is a must read for any freethinking individual who aspires to exercise and express his free will and intellect. Only someone like George Orwell with his experience as an imperial policeman could possess the perspective to create the 95 page dystopian masterpiece that is Animal Farm.
Please Stop Helping Us Jason L. Riley
Summary: Review pending