Rod Oram on the next 100 years

Make no mistake that this was not a session for the faint-hearted, with at times dense discussion of economic and geopolitical futures. That didn’t mean a small crowd though – the theatre was packed – nor did it mean a humourless ninety minutes. Luckily for me, that Rod Oram was sitting outside beforehand, and was keen to join me afterwards for a chat. I spoke with the affable and astute Oram about his thoughts on the “wonderfully challenging” session, the merits of charging for water, the importance of books in the digital age, and more, in this ten-minute interview. Thanks Rod!

It’s the end of the world as we know it …

Loretta NapoleoniBut Loretta Napoleoni feels fine. Sort of. The author of Rogue economics spoke with Mark Sainsbury about the grey areas of the global economy, rogue entrepreneurs, prostitution, slavery, piracy and the political void created by the fall of the Berlin Wall.

You’d think this heavy stuff would be a burden, but Napoleoni is a optimist and a possesser of strong and well argued opinions (she was recently in the media for paying out Bono).

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freakEconomics to me seems to be an irrelevant mass of confusing statistics and maths. This book helps change that view as the two authors, (one an Economics professor, the other a campaigning journalist), attempt to make the reader think beyond the assumed, question the findings of experts and understand that people act because of incentives. Life is more complex than newspapers would have us think.

After reading this book you’ll have the surprising and sometimes shocking answers to thoses niggling questions like: what causes the fall in crime rates? Do the efforts of parents guarantee their offspring will be successful? Does a child’s name affect its status? Why do most drug pushers live with their mothers and are Estate Agents cheats ? Read Freakonomics and find out …