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Anthro-Vision

How Anthropology Can Explain Business and Life

Gillian Tett

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Random House
17 June 2021
A revelatory model that explains how we buy, sell, work and live.

For over a century, anthropologists have immersed themselves in unfamiliar cultures, uncovering the hidden rituals that govern how people act. Now, a new generation of anthropologists are using these methods in a different context - to illuminate the behaviour of businesses and consumers around the globe.

In Anthro-Vision, Gillian Tett - bestselling author, Financial Times journalist, and anthropology PhD - reveals how anthropology can make sense of the corporate world. She outlines how anthropology helps explain consumer behaviour - revealing the 'webs of meaning' that underpin our shopping habits, and unpicking the subtle cultural shifts driving the rise of green business. She explores how anthropology can shed light on the workplace, identifying the hidden tribes within the office, and pinpointing which rituals are binding together a team. And she shows how we can all use anthropology in our own lives, too- helping us make better decisions, navigate risk - even work out what our peers are really thinking.

Along the way, Tett draws on stories from Tajik villages and Amazon warehouses, Japanese classrooms and Wall Street trading floors, all to reveal the power of anthropology in action.

The result is a wholly new way to understand human behaviour. In a short-sighted world, we can all learn to see clearly - using the power of Anthro-Vision.
By:   Gillian Tett
Imprint:   Random House
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 235mm,  Width: 155mm,  Spine: 25mm
Weight:   378g
ISBN:   9781847942883
ISBN 10:   1847942881
Pages:   320
Publication Date:   17 June 2021
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Professional and scholarly ,  Primary ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Gillian Tett is the chairman of the editorial board and editor-at-large at the Financial Times. Best known as the woman who predicted the 2007-8 financial crisis, Tett's bestselling book Fool's Gold was one of the definitive books on the crash. Tett holds a PhD in social anthropology from the University of Cambridge, wher she wrote her dissertation on marriage rituals in Tajikistan. Her work for the FT has taken her around the world - from Brussels to Tokyo to Moscow - and won her numerous awards, including Columnist of the Year at the British Press Awards.

Reviews for Anthro-Vision: How Anthropology Can Explain Business and Life

A book that will turn your world upside down in the best possible way: fun, profound and bursting with important insights. -- Tim Harford, author of HOW TO MAKE THE WORLD ADD UP A fascinating and compelling demonstration that all of us, especially economists, can benefit from the insights of anthropology: the worm's-eye, not just the bird's-eye, view of how people behave. -- Mervyn King, former governor of the Bank of England and co-author of RADICAL UNCERTAINTY Drawing on a wide breadth of case studies, Gillian Tett explains that whether you're marketing Kit-Kats in Japan or fighting the spread of COVID-19 in England, you need a more qualitative understanding of who people are and what they care about. Anyone working to rebuild a more equal world will benefit from Tett's well-argued case that to solve twenty-first-century problems, we must expand our fields of vision and fill in old blind spots with new empathy. -- Melinda Gates, co-chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and author of THE MOMENT OF LIFT Absolutely brilliant . . . Very compelling examples. -- Daniel Kahneman, author of THINKING, FAST AND SLOW and NOISE From a Tajik valley to Silicon valley, Anthro-Vision takes us on an enthralling and deeply insightful journey. Tett shows us how the discipline and tools of anthropology helped her see the world more clearly. Full of rich insights and examples - I couldn't put it down. -- David Halpern, CEO, The Behavioural Insights Team and author of INSIDE THE NUDGE UNIT In a world of volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity, we need an antidote to tunnel vision, argues Gillian Tett. That antidote is Anthro-Vision - applying the techniques of anthropology she learned as a young scholar in Cambridge and Tajikistan . . . Admirers of her journalism will love this book, but they will also learn a great deal from it - including how better to understand their own familiar yet strange tribe. -- Niall Ferguson, Milbank Family Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford and author of DOOM: THE POLITICS OF CATASTROPHE Looking at the world like an anthropologist has long given Gillian Tett the edge over the rest of us as a journalist and thinker. With this book she generously shares her secret recipe - and explains why we may all need Anthro-Vision to see a way through some of today's most pressing global challenges. -- Stephanie Flanders, Senior Executive Editor for Economics, Bloomberg Tett provides readers with a new intellectual framework - grounded in her deep understanding of anthropology and her path-breaking journalism - that can fundamentally transform how we approach solving society's most wicked problems, from climate change to pandemics to political polarisation. I cannot recommend it highly enough. -- Mariana Mazzucato, Professor, UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose and author of THE ENTREPRENEURIAL STATE Trouble follows when insular guilds - bankers, doctors, journalists - fail to take into acconut the viewpoints and folkways of non-elite people . . . [Tett's] conclusions are bright and buoyant. * Wall Street Journal * A plea to those of us who may be unfamiliar with Tett's academic discipline to think more like an anthropologist. I think she's right . . . Tett's book may be anthropological, but it also embraces a style of accessible economic writing that, sadly, went out of fashion as the mathematicians and their models took over. Anthro-Vision reminds me of John Kenneth Galbraith's The Affluent Society (1958) and The New Industrial State (1967). Some economists may regard this as a criticism. I can think of no higher praise. * The Times * A good read, as one might expect from a Financial Times journalist . . . Many of the cases studies are entertaining and instructive . . . This book is a reminder that culture and context really do matter and cannot be ignored when trying to understand and change organisational behaviour. -- Adrian Furnham, Professor of Psychology, UCL * Literary Review * In this superb book, Gillian Tett - Editor-at-Large at the Financial Times - applies the lessons of her doctorate in anthropology to the world of business and, more generally, to social behaviour and trends . . . There are many reasons to read Anthro-Vision, but the most compelling is its liberation of [its] analysis from the often phoney and banal punch-ups of today's culture wars. -- Matthew D'Ancona * Tortoise * A really interesting read. Increasingly, businesses are understanding that we can change our attitudes to things - be better at managing people, managing ourselves, and become more profitable - if we do not take a myopic view of culture. -- Nihal Arthanayake, BBC Radio 5 Live Fantastic . . . A wonderful book and I recommend it. It will help you think about the world differently, but it will also help you think about yourself differently. A very entertaining exercise in a kind of social and cultural mindfulness. -- Matthew Taylor, Chief Executive, Royal Society of Arts * RSA Bridges to the Future *


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