10 books like Regional Advantage

By AnnaLee Saxenian,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Regional Advantage. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission (learn more).

Black Software

By Charlton D. McIlwain,

Book cover of Black Software: The Internet & Racial Justice, from the Afronet to Black Lives Matter

Black software, McIlwain writes, “refers to the programs we desire and design computers to run. It refers to who designs the program, for what purposes, and what or who becomes its object and data.” The book is a much needed examination of the role that Black entrepreneurs, engineers, designers, and users contributed in building the internet.

Black Software

By Charlton D. McIlwain,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Black Software as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Activists, pundits, politicians, and the press frequently proclaim today's digitally mediated racial justice activism the new civil rights movement. As Charlton D. McIlwain shows in this book, the story of racial justice movement organizing online is much longer and varied than most people know. In fact, it spans nearly five decades and involves a varied group of engineers, entrepreneurs, hobbyists, journalists, and activists. But this is a history that is virtually
unknown even in our current age of Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Black Lives Matter.

Beginning with the simultaneous rise of civil rights and computer revolutions in the 1960s, McIlwain,…


The Boy Kings

By Katherine Losse,

Book cover of The Boy Kings: A Journey into the Heart of the Social Network

A memoir that covers Losse’s experience working at Facebook from 2005 when she was the company’s 51st hire. Losse weaves her own experience—at first as a low-level employee in customer support and later as Mark Zuckerberg’s ghostwriter—with sharp analysis of Silicon Valley’s changing role in politics and culture. A powerful reckoning with her own complicity working for a company that exhibited dangerous “totalitarian” ambition from its very beginning.

The Boy Kings

By Katherine Losse,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Boy Kings as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Kate Losse was a grad school refugee when she joined Facebook as employee #51 in 2005. Hired to answer user questions such as "What is a poke?" and "Why can't I access my ex-girlfriend's profile?" her early days at the company were characterized by a sense of camaraderie, promise, and ambition: Here was a group of scrappy young upstarts on a mission to rock Silicon Valley and change the world.

Over time, this sense of mission became so intense that working for Facebook felt like more than just a job; it implied a wholehearted dedication to "the cause." Employees were…


A People's History of Computing in the United States

By Joy Lisi Rankin,

Book cover of A People's History of Computing in the United States

A thorough look at the origins of personal computing and connections between computer users beginning in the 1960s that highlights the BASIC programming language and The Oregon Trail game. Shines a light on the role that universities and the education system played in fostering networks between users.

A People's History of Computing in the United States

By Joy Lisi Rankin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A People's History of Computing in the United States as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Silicon Valley gets all the credit for digital creativity, but this account of the pre-PC world, when computing meant more than using mature consumer technology, challenges that triumphalism.

The invention of the personal computer liberated users from corporate mainframes and brought computing into homes. But throughout the 1960s and 1970s a diverse group of teachers and students working together on academic computing systems conducted many of the activities we now recognize as personal and social computing. Their networks were centered in New Hampshire, Minnesota, and Illinois, but they connected far-flung users. Joy Rankin draws on detailed records to explore how…


From Counterculture to Cyberculture

By Fred Turner,

Book cover of From Counterculture to Cyberculture: Stewart Brand, the Whole Earth Network, and the Rise of Digital Utopianism

Beginning with Steward Brand’s influence through his projects like The Whole Earth Catalog, the WELL, and Wired magazine, this book examines the unique culture of Silicon Valley. An essential history and one that clarifies the tech industry’s seemingly contradictory values of revolution and corporate power.

From Counterculture to Cyberculture

By Fred Turner,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked From Counterculture to Cyberculture as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In "From Counterculture to Cyberculture", Fred Turner details the previously untold story of a highly influential group of San Francisco Bay Area entrepreneurs: Stewart Brand and the Whole Earth network. Between 1968 and 1998, via such familiar venues as the National Book Award - winning "Whole Earth Catalog", the computer-conferencing system known as WELL, and, ultimately, the launch of the wildly successful Wired magazine, Brand and his colleagues brokered a long-running collaboration between San Francisco flower power and the emerging technological hub of Silicon Valley. Thanks to their vision, counterculturalists and technologists alike joined together to reimagine computers as tools…


Competitive Strategy

By Michael E. Porter,

Book cover of Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors

Porter, the strategy guru from Harvard Business School, created the field of competitive analysis, out of which we grew my field of competitive intelligence. This book is the “bible” for every manager out there looking to understand where risks and opportunities come from, and how to take advantage of both (risks can be as profitable as opportunities if you learn of them earlier than others). Over the years, academics and consultants attempted to poke holes in Porter’s basic analysis frameworks to no avail. It remains the only surviving framework used by strategic planners worldwide and outlasted fads and buzz words such as re-organization, blue ocean theory, core competency model, “hyper-competition” misconception, and “business models.” Porter is to strategy what Peter Drucker was to general management. I use these frameworks to train competition analysts all over the world. 

Competitive Strategy

By Michael E. Porter,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Competitive Strategy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Now nearing its sixtieth printing in English and translated into nineteen languages, Michael E. Porter's Competitive Strategy has transformed the theory, practice, and teaching of business strategy throughout the world.

Electrifying in its simplicity-like all great breakthroughs-Porter's analysis of industries captures the complexity of industry competition in five underlying forces. Porter introduces one of the most powerful competitive tools yet developed: his three generic strategies-lowest cost, differentiation, and focus-which bring structure to the task of strategic positioning. He shows how competitive advantage can be defined in terms of relative cost and relative prices, thus linking it directly to profitability, and…


Competing for the Future

By CK Prahalad, Gary Hamel,

Book cover of Competing for the Future

This is another classic in that it redefines the organization less as morphology and structure and more as a set of capabilities. Capabilities represent what an organization is known for and good at doing. Creating the right organization is less about roles and rules, but more about identifying and creating the right capabilities.

Competing for the Future

By CK Prahalad, Gary Hamel,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Competing for the Future as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

New competitive realities have ruptured industry boundaries, overthrown much of standard management practice, and rendered conventional models of strategy and growth obsolete. In their stead have come the powerful ideas and methodologies of Gary Hamel and C.K. Prahalad, whose much-revered thinking has already engendered a new language of strategy. In this book, they develop a coherent model for how today's executives can identify and accomplish no less than heroic goals in tomorrow's marketplace. Their masterful blueprint addresses how executives can ease the tension between competing today and clearing a path toward leadership in the future.


The Darwin Economy

By Robert H. Frank,

Book cover of The Darwin Economy: Liberty, Competition, and the Common Good

Frank explains why Darwin is a better guide than Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations to the problems the economy raises for almost everyone. The most important market and the only market where almost everyone is a seller instead of a buyer is the labor market. Yet it is the one that Adam Smith got almost completely wrong and Charles Darwin got almost completely right. Frank shows us how the Darwinian process of the labor market makes employers rich at the expense of workers, and how they stitched their advantage into the “Right to Work” (at lower wages) laws.

The Darwin Economy

By Robert H. Frank,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Darwin Economy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Who was the greater economist--Adam Smith or Charles Darwin? The question seems absurd. Darwin, after all, was a naturalist, not an economist. But Robert Frank, New York Times economics columnist and best-selling author of The Economic Naturalist, predicts that within the next century Darwin will unseat Smith as the intellectual founder of economics. The reason, Frank argues, is that Darwin's understanding of competition describes economic reality far more accurately than Smith's. And the consequences of this fact are profound. Indeed, the failure to recognize that we live in Darwin's world rather than Smith's is putting us all at risk by…


The Startup Squad

By Brian Weisfeld, Nicole C. Kear,

Book cover of The Startup Squad

This lively middle-grade fiction series hits all the right notes: an engrossing, page-turner of budding friendships, strong girl characters, fun competition, and diverse characters that readers easily connect with and relate to. Throw in a common childhood experience – setting up a lemonade stand – but amp it up just enough so it’s more than a lemonade stand...it’s a startup business. I loved that The Startup Squad is a fun read that also manages to introduce business concepts and practices like: idea notebooks, brainstorming, marketing, sales, location, and quality merchandising. Readers can be forgiven if they take their time getting to the next book in the series – chances are, they’ll be a bit preoccupied dreaming up their own new businesses.

The Startup Squad

By Brian Weisfeld, Nicole C. Kear,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Startup Squad as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The start of an exciting new series, The Startup Squad encourages the entrepreneurial spirit in young readers with a fun, accessible voice and a heartwarming story of friendship.

When their 6th grade class holds a fundraiser, four girls who barely know each other are tasked with starting a lemonade stand - and competing against their classmates to raise the most money. But Resa just takes charge without asking, Amelia keeps asking questions, Harriet keeps getting distracted, and Didi cracks under pressure. The recipe for success is tough to perfect, and there'll be some sweet and sour moments along the way…


The Great Reversal

By Thomas Philippon,

Book cover of The Great Reversal: How America Gave Up on Free Markets

Since Adam Smith, economists have understood that market competition is a key ingredient in aligning market outcomes with societal benefits. Yet, market competition has eroded in recent decades in the United States. Among other insights, this book describes the surprising finding that the European economy, by many key metrics, is more competitive than the American economy. The book also discusses the importance of competition for encouraging innovation, economic growth, and widely shared economic prosperity.

The Great Reversal

By Thomas Philippon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Great Reversal as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A Financial Times Book of the Year
A ProMarket Book of the Year

"Superbly argued and important...Donald Trump is in so many ways a product of the defective capitalism described in The Great Reversal. What the U.S. needs, instead, is another Teddy Roosevelt and his energetic trust-busting. Is that still imaginable? All believers in the virtues of competitive capitalism must hope so."
-Martin Wolf, Financial Times

"In one industry after another...a few companies have grown so large that they have the power to keep prices high and wages low. It's great for those corporations-and bad for almost everyone else."
-David…


Blown to Bits

By Philip Evans, Thomas S. Wurster,

Book cover of Blown to Bits: How the New Economics of Information Transforms Strategy

This book described the economics of the internet age as the web was taking off. It remains a classic in that it not only predicted many of the transformations that were to play out on the web, including social media, and it continues to be useful as a template for predicting the coming transformations that will be wrought by Web3 and Blockchain.

Blown to Bits

By Philip Evans, Thomas S. Wurster,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Blown to Bits as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Richness or reach? The trade-off used to be simple but absolute: your business strategy either could focus on 'rich' information - customized products and services tailored to a niche audience - or could reach out to a larger market, but with watered-down information that sacrificed richness in favor of a broad, general appeal. Much of business strategy as we know it today rests on this fundamental trade-off. Now, say Evans and Wurster, the new economics of information is eliminating the trade-off between richness and reach, blowing apart the foundations of traditional business strategy. "Blown to Bits" reveals how the spread…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in Silicon Valley, Massachusetts, and California?

7,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about Silicon Valley, Massachusetts, and California.

Silicon Valley Explore 14 books about Silicon Valley
Massachusetts Explore 104 books about Massachusetts
California Explore 253 books about California