Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Age of Discovery

Age of Discovery

Navigating the Risks and Rewards of Our New Renaissance

Ian Goldin and Chris Kutarna

St. Martin's Press

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The present is a contest between the bright and dark sides of discovery. To avoid being torn apart by its stresses, we need to recognize the fact—and gain courage and wisdom from the past. Age of Discovery shows how.

Now is the best moment in history to be alive, but we have never felt more anxious or divided. Human health, aggregate wealth and education are flourishing. Scientific discovery is racing forward. But the same global flows of trade, capital, people and ideas that make gains possible for some people deliver big losses to others—and make us all more vulnerable to one another.

Business and science are working giant revolutions upon our societies, but our politics and institutions evolve at a much slower pace. That’s why, in a moment when everyone ought to be celebrating giant global gains, many of us are righteously angry at being left out and stressed about where we’re headed.

To make sense of present shocks, we need to step back and recognize: we’ve been here before. The first Renaissance, the time of Columbus, Copernicus, Gutenberg and others, likewise redrew all maps of the world, democratized communication and sparked a flourishing of creative achievement. But their world also grappled with the same dark side of rapid change: social division, political extremism, insecurity, pandemics and other unintended consequences of discovery.

Now is the second Renaissance. We can still flourish—if we learn from the first.

Reviews

Praise for Age of Discovery

"A landmark new book"--The Guardian (UK)


“[A] lively account of both Renaissance and modern history…Maybe someone should send Mr. Trump a copy of this book; it might yield some thought ­provoking tweets.”--The Financial Times

"A bold mega-analysis of global education, health, prosperity and technology...incisive and rich in context and granularity."--Nature

"An essential guide—and a superb ride—through our current stormy moment."--Arianna Huffington, Founder, President & Editor-in-Chief, Huffington Post

"A powerful journey…This book will help the world."--Sir Richard Branson, Founder, Virgin Group

"Everyone should read it."--Michael Spence, Nobel Laureate in Economics

"A rich portrait…Powerful parallels…Essential insights for every emerging Michelangelo and da Vinci."--Reid Hoffman, Founder & Chairman, LinkedIn

"Ian and Chris ask—and answer—the big, essential questions…We should thank them for their audacity."--Christine Lagarde, Managing Director, International Monetary Fund

"A remarkable feat of both history and prophecy. Ian and Chris have given us a gift of self-reflection that is indeed rare."--Larry Brilliant, former Executive Director, Google.org

"A masterpiece."--Vijay Govindarajan, New York Times Best Selling Author

"A much needed dose of perspective in our increasingly short-term focused world."--Dominic Barton, Global Managing Director, McKinsey & Co

"Essential reading to navigate the waves of innovation we face today."--Garry Kasparov, 13th World Chess Champion and Chairman of the Human Rights Foundation

"A call to action we all need to hear."--Kumi Naidoo, International Executive Director, Greenpeace

"A refreshing change from the shallow analyses and sterile nostrums of the right and the left…an impressive and important book."--Edmund Phelps, Nobel Laureate in Economics

"A hugely stimulating book…Everyone should heed the authors’ call."--Niall Ferguson, Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History, Harvard University

"An education and a great read in one."--A.C. Grayling, Philosopher

"Outstanding insights for all those interested in the stresses of the modern world and how other ages have confronted them."--Andrew Hamilton, President, NYU & past Vice-Chancellor, Oxford University

"A very important reminder to grasp the opportunities in the many challenges we are facing today."--Hans-Paul Bürkner, Chairman, Boston Consulting Group

"A must-read for present and future leaders everywhere."--Asha Kanwar, President & CEO, Commonwealth of Learning

"This fascinating book…should interest all who care about the future of humanity."--Lord Martin Rees, UK Astronomer Royal & past President of the Royal Society

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Ian Goldin and Chris Kutarna

Ian Goldin is a professor and the director of the Oxford Martin School at the University of Oxford. He was Vice President of the World Bank from 2003-2006. Formerly, he was Chief Executive and Director of the Development Bank of Southern Africa and served as an adviser to President Nelson Mandela.

Chris Kutarna is a Sauvé Fellow and Commonwealth Scholar, and a Fellow of the Oxford Martin School at the University of Oxford. An expert on international politics and economics, he was a strategy consultant at the Boston Consulting Group, then entrepreneur, and is now involved in projects across Asia, North America and Europe.

Ian Goldin

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Chris Kutarna

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From the Publisher

St. Martin's Press

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