Sixteen titles have made the longlist for the 2019 Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award with the issue of how to handle fast-moving technological change looming large.
The winner of the £30,000 prize will go to the book that is judged to have provided the most compelling and enjoyable insight into modern business issues, with £10,000 awarded to each runner-up.
FT associate editor and management editor Andrew Hill said: "The pressing issue of how to handle fast-moving technological change looms over the longlist for this year’s Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award. Sixteen titles will compete for the £30,000 prize, including a weighty history of capitalism, two books about subtle — and not-so-subtle — bias against women, and an account of how the financial crisis was contained by the policymakers who led the battle to save the global economy. Four years after Martin Ford’s The Rise of the Robots became the first tech title to win the award, books analysing the impact of advances in artificial intelligence, digitisation and online communication stand out."
Loonshots: How to Nurture the Crazy Ideas That Win Wars, Cure Diseases, and Transform Industries by Safi Bahcall is in the running alongside St Martin's Press stablemate Big Business: A Love Letter to an American Anti-Hero by Tyler Cowen.
Profile Books also scooped two nominations with Firefighting: The Financial Crisis and its Lessons by Ben S. Bernanke, Timothy F. Geithner & Henry M Paulson Jr (Penguin Press, US) and The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power by Shoshana Zuboff (PublicAffairs US), which attacks Google, Facebook and others for extracting personal data.
Boom: Mad Money, Mega Dealers, and the Rise of Contemporary Art by Michael Shnayerson (PublicAffairs), Kochland: The Secret History of Koch Industries and Corporate Power in America by Christopher Leonard (Simon & Schuster) and The Man Who Solved the Market: How Jim Simons Launched the Quant Revolution by Gregory Zuckerman (Penguin Business,UK and Portfolio Penguin US) are also vying for the £30,000 prize.
Equal: A Story of Women, Men & Money (Virago) sees Carrie Gracie turn the spotlight on the BBC as she recounts her fight for equal pay for her and other women at the UK’s public broadcaster. The BBC’s former China editor sets her story, to be published next month, in the wider context of women’s long and continuing struggle for workplace equality.
Former prize winner Raghuram Rajan returns with The Third Pillar: The Revival of Community in a Polarised World (William Collins, UK, HarperCollins, India and Penguin Press, US) and will go head to head with Extreme Economies: Survival, Failure, Future – Lessons from the World’s Limits by economist Richard Davies (Bantam Press, UK and Farrar, Straus & Giroux US).
Allen Lane has done the double with Donald Sassoon's sweeping history of capitalism The Anxious Triumph: A Global History of Capitalism, 1860-1914 and Human Compatible: AI and the Problem of Control by Stuart Russell (Viking (US), which sees AI researcher Russell suggest how humans could rethink the basis of this new technology so that machines conform to our goals.
Invisible Women: Exposing Data Bias in a World Designed for Men by Caroline Criado Perez (Chatto & Windus, UK and Abrams Press/Abrams US) lays out how designers and developers have persistently excluded or downplayed women in the data sets they use, to dangerous effect as Amy Webb's The Big Nine: How the Tech Titans and Their Thinking Machines Could Warp Humanity (PublicAffairs) examines the largest US and Chinese companies dominating the introduction of AI into our lives.
Range: How Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World by David Epstein (Pan Macmillan, UK and Riverhead Books US) and John Browne makes a second appearance on the longlist with Make, Think, Imagine: Engineering the Future of Civilisation (Bloomsbury Publishing, UK and Pegasus Books US).
John Carreyrou won the 2018 prize for Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup (Picador, UK and Knopf US). The judges, chaired by FT editor Lionel Barber will select a shortlist of up to six titles in September. Now in its 15th year, this year’s awards ceremony and dinner will take place in New York on 3rd December.
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