Read Creative Capitalism: A Conversation with Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and Other Economic Leaders by Michael E. Kinsley Conor Clarke Online


Bill Gates is more than the world's most successful capitalist; he's also the world's biggest philanthropist.Gates has approached philanthropy the same way he revolutionized computer software: with a fierce ambition to change the rules of the game. That's why at the 2008 annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Gates advocated a creative capitalismBill Gates is more than the world's most successful capitalist; he's also the world's biggest philanthropist.Gates has approached philanthropy the same way he revolutionized computer software: with a fierce ambition to change the rules of the game. That's why at the 2008 annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Gates advocated a creative capitalism in which big corporations, the distinguishing feature of the modern global economy, integrate doing good into their way of doing business.This controversial new idea is discussed and debated by the more than forty contributors to this book, among them three Nobel laureates and two former U.S. cabinet secretaries. Edited by author and columnist Michael Kinsley, "Creative Capitalism" started as a first-of-its-kind online conversation that brought together some of the world's best minds to engage Gates's challenge. From Warren Buffett, who seconds Gates's analysis, to Lawrence Summers, who worries about the consequences of multiple corporate objectives, the essays cover a broad spectrum of opinion. Judge Richard Posner dismisses Gates's proposal as trumped-up charity that will sap the strengths of the profit-maximizing corporation, while journalist Martin Wolf maintains that the maximization of profit is far from universally accepted, and rightly so. Chicago Nobel laureate Gary Becker wonders whether altruistic companies can survive in a competitive economy, while Columbia Nobel laureate Edmund Phelps argues that a little altruism might be the right prescription for a variety of market imperfections."Creative Capitalism" is not just a book for philanthropists. It's a book that challenges the conventional wisdom about our economic system, a road map for the new global economy that is emerging as capitalism adapts itself once again to a changing world....

Title : Creative Capitalism: A Conversation with Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and Other Economic Leaders
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ISBN : 9781416599418
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 336 Pages
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Creative Capitalism: A Conversation with Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and Other Economic Leaders Reviews

  • บอมบุง พ่อยอดคะน้าอ่อน
    2019-02-13 17:21

    อ่านสนุก เพราะเต็มไปด้วยการปะทะสังสรรค์กันตลอดเวลาแม้ว่าภาพ 'ทุนนิยมสร้างสรรค์' อาจจะยังไม่ชัด แต่หนังสือเล่มนี้ก็ได้พยายามตีความ ตีแผ่ และพูดคุยจากทั้งผู้เห็นด้วยและไม่เห็นด้วย จากทั้งนักวิชาการและนักธุรกิจ

  • Chavi
    2019-02-19 11:57

    This book is a collection of discussions and opinions on creative capitalism (aka social capitalism, social enterprise) from leading economic and business figures.I was surprised by how vehemently opposed many of the authors were to creative capitalism. It seems that because of the success of capitalism until now people are wary of innovating, essentially claiming that capitalism as it the solution to everything.The issue is that despite its huge successes until now, there are limitations to capitalism that the defenders of traditional capitalism don't acknowledge. They keep insisting that capitalism is working fine, and maybe at the time of the writing (immediately prior to the 2008 crash), it seemed that it was. Now, it's pretty clear that capitalism is NOT working fine, on this measure for sure:"For capitalism to flourish their cannot be income inequality." - Jagdish Bhagwatti, economist at Columbia universityIt's interesting to note there were two kinds of pieces. There were arguments for or against different models of capitalism, and there were pieces that skipped the argument and went straight to proposing ideas and innovations that would allow a closer relationship between business and social change. The dilemma of social capitalism can be boiled down to this:1. Multiple organizational goals may lead to under performance BUT2. Focusing exclusively on profit maximization is too narrow and encourages sacrifice of the long term to the short term.The first is a criticism of the social capitalism model, the second is a criticism of the current model which relies heavily on fiduciary duty and maximizing profits.Some quotes opposed to social enterprise:"[Social] business wouldn't be held accountable because success and performance won't be properly linked." - Larry Summers, economist and former Treasury Secretary"Fix democracy. Let the private sector make money and the public sector decide what said private sector is morally and ethically obligated to do." -Robert Reich, economist and former labor secretaryIn favor:"Don't fork the incentives of profit and doing social good, thereby pushing two incongruous goals - align them." - Gregory Clark, professor at UC Davis"Between the for-profit model in which there is a fiduciary duty to stockholders, and non-profits which cannot issue equity, there should be a third contractual form for companies that want to make a profit but that's not their only goal" - Ed Glaeser, economics professor at HarvardThe book resembles a real life discussion in that it isn't linear. Some pieces directly respond to others, but many are standalone or are built on contradictory premises. This is a great resource because you'll find support for almost any opinion on the matter, but it isn't a comprehensive, organised treatise on the matter.

  • David
    2019-02-07 13:20

    Interesting, I think successful, experiment in publishing format. Michael Kinsley organized a website for hosting a dialogue based on Bill Gates' world economic forum speech advocating for "creative capitalism" [a good deal of the dialogue has to do with trying to define this term, but gist seems to be corporations' bringing business expertise to bear on solving the problems of the poorest people/countries of the world]. The individual contributions are mostly brief -- it was like reading an online dialogue except I didn't have to be online or see popup ads or what have you. Having a low level of expertise in these matters, I could have used a narrator or ref or sorts to jump in once in a while and indicate whether the example just given of a market-based strategy for getting anti-malarial drugs in the hands of sub-Saharan Africans or what have you is cherry-picked from among 100 other failures or is representative.Overall, though, it was an intellectually stimulating book, and having a number of authors come at it in slightly different ways helped bring the points of debate into sharper focus. One had to do with whether this is really anything new. The purist authors tended to argue that either (a) these socially responsible activities are good for the bottom line (better workers will stay with a company they believe is doing good in the world; customers will pay more if the coffee is "fair trade" etc.), in which case it is just regular old capitalism and there is no need to invent a new term and exhort companies to engage in the activities; or(b) they are not profit-maximizing, in which case who is the CEO or the board or whomever to tell the paying customers, the workers, and the shareholders how their charitable giving should be directed (as in, here, pay more for this Project Red t-shirt so I can direct some profits to AIDS charities -- on the other hand, how about charging me less or distributing more in dividends to me, or paying me a higher wage, and I'll decide whether my spare money should go to that charity vs. something else?)that may be, but as someone whose modest retirement and mutual fund savings are in socially screened funds to make sure I don't profit from tobacco, I still think there's something here. Even if it's not pure altruism, I'd rather pressure corporations to lend a hand with distribution of mosquito nets in Africa than with subsidizing Masterpiece Theater on PBS, or taking out newspaper ads to tell me how much they care about the environment.

  • Stephen Wong
    2019-02-16 19:07

    A multi-faceted anthology of blog contributors turned into a book by editor Michael Kinsley, it falters very early on with definites or definitives (what exactly the term Creative Capitalism or Corporate Social Responsibility signifies) and with indefinites or indefinitives (the so what if so, it does not make any difference). Perhaps it is just people's prolix that makes it so, and that if everyone kept quiet for a while the do-gooding will actually take place with or without the profit motive or so-called giving back to community.I think the debate eventually boiled down to confusing means-ends, for the term itself, or for its sense of meliorism. If CC or CSR is to be a means to something, then no matter what, it is to be judged on the outcome or the attainment of those ends. This is Bill Gates's original impetus for putting out the siren call and backing it up with personal fortune via the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Some of the contributors then flipped the notion to that of being an end in itself. At that point it has become sterile and academic. While informative and mildly compelling in coherence and consistency, in Kuhnian terms the flipped investigation meets the paradigm to which it is set. In this frame of analysis, the apparent urgency and importance of wielding the product-development, marketing channels, financing and governance of business "altruism" (often couched in the agency problem of owner-management conflicts) disappear into the ether as something superfluous at best and damning to capitalist foundations at worst.This brings to mind Karl Polanyi's "The Great Transformation". There appears a swath of "fictitious commodities" which have come up in the debate, and perhaps this is attributable to the market's reductio ad whatever. Polanyi's coda points to a post-meliorism of the great capitalist transformation to one of restoration of habitation -- and I might suggest that the Davos confab and meetings of minds some other wheres would benefit from the political economic insights Polanyi wrote about.

  • Nikhil Kumar
    2019-02-12 13:27

    Good topic worth exploring... The basic idea presented by Gates in his speech at Davos is that business has a greater-than-realized capacity to solve societal problems from public health to access to technology. Citing C.K. Prahalad's prior work, Gates urges that the private sector take a closer look at the "bottom of the pyramid" for market opportunities that will also lift people from poverty or illness. What follows the text of Gates' speech is an informal back and forth from a collection of reputable economists, academics, professionals, and journalists, among others, who either argue for or against some form of the Creative Capitalism Gates argues for.Normally, I would love this format. It allows for a wide range of opinion from great minds, debating a very interesting idea. Unfortunately, Gates' speech left the topic broad (intentionally) and many of the essays in this collection are debating forms of CC that are most likely nothing like what Gates outlined. There was too much focus on the economics of the modern form of Corporate Social Responsibility and not enough thought about the possibility of a creative and socially minded private sector. There were certainly some great ideas on both sides and some very forward looking comments that have given me some inspiration as I get ready to start my career. I'm hoping to see more thought put in to what business' role in society is and how they can best maximize their talent and resources to solve problems... Maybe I should read Yunus' book next.

  • Sally
    2019-01-21 12:22

    In this book, Bill Gates gets a bunch of smarmy businessmen and economists to comment on how business can engage in social and development issues. The results are, unsurprisingly, rather pessimistic. It quickly became clear to me that hardly any of these contributors knew shit-all about development. Almost all of them miss the main point--that businesses can take advantage of efficiencies (of scale, of existing assets and infrastructure, of distribution channels, etc.) to see better returns than individual donors like you or I can. If you like economics and really think that people are heartless hyper-rational robots, you will like this book. If you know much of anything about development, it will induce nausea (especially gag-worthy was the part where Richard Posner suggests that we shouldn't save third-world lives because then there'd be too many people). The book has some interesting ideas but the reader requires such a massive boulder of salt that I'm not sure it's worth it unless you have a lot of interest in this area.One main problem seems to be that no one really knows what Bill Gates is even talking about. Another seems to be the fact everyone's contributions are so short and generalized that there isn't much opportunity for meaningful insight. I also had beef with the fact that you have to get over 100 pages into the book before you hear a female voice. Anyways, having got all that off my chest, I guess it wasn't all that bad.

  • Krishna Kumar
    2019-01-22 15:08

    This is one of the economics books that is a joy to read. The book is about the term “Creative Capitalism”, a term introduced by Bill Gates to describe a new system that is meant to generate profits while helping to alleviate the suffering of the poor and the helpless in the world. Different economists air their views on the subject.One of the main threads of discussion was whether the term “creative capitalism” is meaningful. Isn’t capitalism already creative? Some economists object to this term because it implies that the present capitalism is insufficient in addressing poverty and other development problems. The discussion also centers around the social responsibilities of a corporation. Should a corporation be concerned only with profits for shareholders and leaving matters of charity, equality and development to individuals and the democratic systems? Does it have other obligations to society? What are the stakeholders for a corporation other than its shareholders?The book covers a lot of ground not through one particular person’s point of view, but through many different perspectives from all parts of the economic spectrum. As the world moves towards addressing the important challenges of this century (poverty, disease, and climate change), you will continue to hear and read more about this topic.

  • Brian
    2019-01-22 16:23

    I don't think there was anything really ground breaking here. Capitalism has some serious flaws, although it has resulted in prosperity for more people than have had it before. There are still too many people left out. There are lot of issues and questions that are ignored.1. Greed may result in more prosperity (for some), but at what point are we going too far? When do we have enough?2. Is growth the only means to ending poverty? Is that sustainable as the population grows?3. The strong will take everything for themselves. Who is looking out for the weak?I think my favorite quote from the book was from Larry Summers "What is the most screwed up today? GSE's Citibank, regional banks. What is the most regulated? Same list. What is least screwed up? Hedge funds and the like. What is least regulated?"pg 206 The worm seems to have turned on that one Larry....

  • Garnett
    2019-02-04 12:15

    This is a collection of commentaries on Bill Gates's concept of socially responsible capitalism. commentaries are written by the erudite and the filthy rich who somehow got the label "economic leaders". I'm not sure why I picked it up, except maybe to try and understand how these people think. I think that objective was achieved. These "Economic leaders" are absolutely certain that their sweeping generalizations about human nature and social change are utterly and ineluctably correct. The level of dogmatism with which these "economic leaders" write is appalling, not just because of their convictions, but also because of their undeniable influence in world politics. It's a whole other world up there at the top....

  • A.J. Bryant
    2019-02-16 12:14

    Full disclosure, my roommate is one of the co-editors of this book. I found the topic rather fascinating; what is corporate social responsbility, does it even exist, should it exist?..ect. It did get a bit repetitive, but there were some good points made on all views of the spectrum of CSR. Another thing, I'm not good with economic concepts, but I am interested in making the world a better place. I think those that have more of an econ background would be able to appreciate this book more.

  • Liras
    2019-01-27 18:58

    This was...okay. Like most books that lean toward the notion that a giant corporation with a charitable arm is the key to fixing the ills of society, it tries to persuade us that capitalism can have a softer side. I am sure the philanthropic notions and acts of the renowned industrialists of our age have helped. However, I do not expect capitalism to solve problems, only to find ways to sell us tools to work on problems.

  • Effendy Yahaya
    2019-01-24 16:25

    The elaboration of creative capitalism vague across many pondering relation between profit making corporation and its social responsibilities thus to answer the inequalities in free market. but, argument plotted a bit disoriented within this book, its too many. I shall revisit on what Milton Friedman has stated, in brief, maximise resources, increasing profit without deception or fraud. revisit capitalism.

  • Jackie
    2019-02-15 20:20

    Kinsley, Michael with Conor Clark. 2008. "Creative Capitalism: A Conversation with Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and Other Economic Leaders," (Simon & Schuster, $26). Seattle writer-editor Kinsley talks with Gates, Buffett, Milton Friedman, Robert Reich and 35 other economists on topics that range from taxes and profit to charity and the poor. (Most provocative essay title: Richard Posner's "Altruists Are like Sadomasochists").

  • Kusal Perera
    2019-02-07 16:14

    The debate is interestingly common and old. No doubt the contributors are new and have new labels and similies, new examples and new information, but the arguments don't seem to have moved out into the new world. Its still the argument on how capitalism could "creatively" hold onto the future world.

  • Bob
    2019-02-18 15:08

    Liked the idea of point counter point format on creative capitalism. Some input seemed to be off topic & created confusion. Gave it 3 star rating because it makes you think to draw your own conclusion.

  • Marshal Mdeza
    2019-02-03 14:09

    Bill Gates says that companies must deliberately accumulate funds so sort of problems of the society where they exist. others argue that taxes that companies pay must do that job.What Jobs is saying is that Governments are not as efficient as entrepreneurs.

  • Maftuna
    2019-02-15 17:10

    Could someone tell me please how can I download e books by Bill Gates?

  • Zach
    2019-02-07 13:13

    Starts out pretty good. Then just gets overly repetitive. My suggestions: Read the first half of the book (4stars) and skip the second half (2stars).

  • Amirul
    2019-01-27 15:02

    smart people disproving each other. just love it

  • Christian
    2019-01-20 16:01

    Interesting to begin with, but after a while it got dull...

  • Richard
    2019-02-15 12:03

    Author Michael Kinsley interviewed on KQED forum.