100 books like The Worldly Philosophers

By Robert L. Heilbroner,

Here are 100 books that The Worldly Philosophers fans have personally recommended if you like The Worldly Philosophers. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong about the World--And Why Things Are Better Than You Think

Gerard Pasterkamp Author Of Painted Science: The history of scientific discoveries, explorers and technological developments captured in painting

From my list on trying to explain basics in human behavior and decision making in a scientific manner.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a scientist in the field of medicine, and I like to read books that provide a surprising insight into our thinking and decision-making with a scientific basis. It is special how we think we are acting rationally while much of our action is influenced by the environment and news that comes our way. Some of the books in my list provide special insights that are refreshing and hold a mirror up to us.

Gerard's book list on trying to explain basics in human behavior and decision making in a scientific manner

Gerard Pasterkamp Why did Gerard love this book?

It's amazing how our thinking is influenced by a biased statement. This book shows that there is still hope when you look at the real facts.

The author asks a number of questions that require basic knowledge of everyday data that we read a lot about in the press. Questions such as: "How many people in the world are illiterate?" or "How many women are not educated?" are answered incorrectly by politicians, bankers, and scientists, those who determine our policy.

It is confronting to realize that more questions could have been answered correctly by simply guessing.

By Hans Rosling, Anna Rosling Rönnlund, Ola Rosling

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Factfulness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'A hopeful book about the potential for human progress when we work off facts rather than our inherent biases.' BARACK OBAMA

'One of the most important books I've ever read - an indispensable guide to thinking clearly about the world.' BILL GATES

*#1 Sunday Times bestseller * New York Times bestseller * Observer 'best brainy book of the decade' * Irish Times bestseller * Guardian bestseller * audiobook bestseller *

Factfulness: The stress-reducing habit of only carrying opinions for which you have strong supporting facts.

When asked simple questions about global trends - why the world's population is increasing; how…


Book cover of Thinking, Fast and Slow

Scott Galloway Author Of The Algebra of Wealth: A Simple Formula for Financial Security

From my list on helping you be your best self.

Why am I passionate about this?

I try to use my platform to  help people consider how to live a more meaningful life. I've made mistakes, learned from them, and want to pass on those lessons. There are many definitions of success and fulfillment and many paths to achieve it. I hope by telling my story others can avoid some of the mistakes I made.

Scott's book list on helping you be your best self

Scott Galloway Why did Scott love this book?

Professor Kahneman’s ideologies on decision-making have helped me in business and my personal life.

His insights have enhanced my decision-making process and helped me navigate the strait between instinct and decision. His insights have encouraged me to delegate routine decisions, allowing me to reserve my mental energy for the most critical choices.

By Daniel Kahneman,

Why should I read it?

42 authors picked Thinking, Fast and Slow as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The phenomenal international bestseller - 2 million copies sold - that will change the way you make decisions

'A lifetime's worth of wisdom' Steven D. Levitt, co-author of Freakonomics
'There have been many good books on human rationality and irrationality, but only one masterpiece. That masterpiece is Thinking, Fast and Slow' Financial Times

Why is there more chance we'll believe something if it's in a bold type face? Why are judges more likely to deny parole before lunch? Why do we assume a good-looking person will be more competent? The answer lies in the two ways we make choices: fast,…


Book cover of Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World

Alan Bollard Author Of Economists at War: How a Handful of Economists Helped Win and Lose the World Wars

From my list on how economists agree and disagree amongst each other.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an economics professor at Victoria University of Wellington. As a previous Secretary of the New Zealand Treasury and Governor of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, I have had quite a bit of experience watching economists’ ideas succeed and fail in the real world. I have written a number of books about policy economists and their lives in peace and wartime. (And a couple of novels too!)

Alan's book list on how economists agree and disagree amongst each other

Alan Bollard Why did Alan love this book?

This is the story of four (European and American) central bankers fighting the dramas and crises during the lead-up to the Great Depression. When crisis looms, Bank of England Governor Montagu Norman puts on a disguise and boards a cruise ship to consult with his friend Benjamin Strong in New York. If only financial crises could still be fought that way today! I liked it because I used to be a central bank governor myself!

By Liaquat Ahamed,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Lords of Finance as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize

"Erudite, entertaining macroeconomic history of the lead-up to the Great Depression as seen through the careers of the West's principal bankers . . . Spellbinding, insightful and, perhaps most important, timely." -Kirkus Reviews (starred)

"There is terrific prescience to be found in [Lords of Finance's] portrait of times past . . . [A] writer of great verve and erudition, [Ahamed] easily connects the dots between the economic crises that rocked the world during the years his book covers and the fiscal emergencies that beset us today." -The New York Times

It is commonly believed that…


Book cover of How to Make the World Add Up: Ten Rules for Thinking Differently About Numbers

Rebecca Campbell Author Of How to Teach Economics to Your Dog: A Quirky Introduction

From my list on economics for people who are allergic to algebra.

Why am I passionate about this?

I currently teach in the management department of the London School of Economics, and I often need to communicate economic ideas to non-economists. Honestly, I was very nervous about writing (yet another) book about economics. Especially since there are so many around. Two things made me have a go. I really wanted to convey the key arguments with simplicity, translating often complicated and abstruse ideas into straightforward language in a way that didn’t dumb down. Second the world has changed so much in recent years that you need to keep up to date. Quantitative easing, modern monetary theory, and Bitcoin are ideas that just did not exist until recently. 

Rebecca's book list on economics for people who are allergic to algebra

Rebecca Campbell Why did Rebecca love this book?

All politicians should be forced to read this book. Anyone who reads a newspaper should be forced to read this book. My favourite radio programme in the world is Tim Harford’s More or Less. And this book is every bit as good. Harford is clear, incisive, and always interesting. In a world crowded with disinformation and fake news, he shows you how to evaluate the numbers that are thrown at you. To read him is to become a little cleverer. Make this man prime minister someone.

By Tim Harford,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked How to Make the World Add Up as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Sunday Times Bestseller

'Tim Harford is one of my favourite writers in the world. His storytelling is gripping but never overdone, his intellectual honesty is rare and inspiring, and his ability to make complex things simple - but not simplistic - is exceptional. How to Make the World Add Up is another one of his gems. If you're looking for an addictive pageturner that will make you smarter, this is your book' Rutger Bregman, author of Humankind

'Tim Harford could well be Britain's Malcolm Gladwell'
Alex Bellos, author of Alex's Adventures in Numberland

'If you aren't in love with…


Book cover of Money: The Unauthorized Biography

Daromir Rudnyckyj Author Of Beyond Debt: Islamic Experiments in Global Finance

From my list on how anthropology helps us understand the economy.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm an economic anthropologist and teach classes and conduct research in this area. Economic anthropology is different from economics in that it questions many of the things that economics takes for granted. For example, most economists assume that allocating goods through the market by buying and selling is the best way to organize human communities. Economic anthropologists have shown, in contrast, that many societies have been organized according to other exchange principles. In fact, some of the oldest communities in the world, such as Sumer and Babylon, based their economies around elaborate systems of redistribution, in which every citizen was guaranteed food shares.

Daromir's book list on how anthropology helps us understand the economy

Daromir Rudnyckyj Why did Daromir love this book?

Money is often thought of as a valuable thing, like gold or silver. 

This leads us to presume that it must be finite in quality due to its scarcity. Drawing on anthropological studies of objects such as Yap stones, massive stone disks found on a far-flung island in the Pacific Ocean.

Martin shows instead that money is not so much a thing but an abstract system for tracking who has what and who is entitled to what, similar to what the anthropologist Keith Hart has called a “memory bank.” By rethinking money along these lines, we might be able to rethink how we decide who gets what and who doesn’t get what in our communities.

By Felix Martin,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Money as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From ancient currency to Adam Smith, from the gold standard to shadow banking and the Great Recession: a sweeping historical epic that traces the development and evolution of one of humankind’s greatest inventions.

What is money, and how does it work? In this tour de force of political, cultural and economic history, Felix Martin challenges nothing less than our conventional understanding of money. He describes how the Western idea of money emerged from interactions between Mesopotamia and ancient Greece and was shaped over the centuries by tensions between sovereigns and the emerging middle classes. He explores the extraordinary diversity of…


Book cover of Grand Pursuit: The Story of Economic Genius

Alan Bollard Author Of Economists at War: How a Handful of Economists Helped Win and Lose the World Wars

From my list on how economists agree and disagree amongst each other.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an economics professor at Victoria University of Wellington. As a previous Secretary of the New Zealand Treasury and Governor of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, I have had quite a bit of experience watching economists’ ideas succeed and fail in the real world. I have written a number of books about policy economists and their lives in peace and wartime. (And a couple of novels too!)

Alan's book list on how economists agree and disagree amongst each other

Alan Bollard Why did Alan love this book?

Under the headings of hope, fear, and confidence, Nasar takes us through the lives, the ideas, the failings, and arguments of several dozen economists, in a lively journalistic fashion. From the last chaotic days of Joseph Schumpeter’s failing post-war Vienna to Joan Robinson’s 1950s propaganda trip to Stalin’s Moscow, she gives us an illuminating view of history and what economists did to try to improve it.

By Sylvia Nasar,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

An instant New York Times bestseller, in a sweeping narrative the author of the esteemed A Beautiful Mind takes us on a journey through modern history with the men and women who changed the lives of every single person on the planet. Grand Pursuit is the epic story of the making of modern economics, of how economics rescued mankind from squalor and deprivation by placing its material fate in its own hands.

A New York Times bestseller, this sweeping narrative from the author of A Beautiful Mind takes us on a journey through modern history with the men and women…


Book cover of The Battle of Bretton Woods: John Maynard Keynes, Harry Dexter White, and the Making of a New World Order

Alan Bollard Author Of Economists at War: How a Handful of Economists Helped Win and Lose the World Wars

From my list on how economists agree and disagree amongst each other.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an economics professor at Victoria University of Wellington. As a previous Secretary of the New Zealand Treasury and Governor of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, I have had quite a bit of experience watching economists’ ideas succeed and fail in the real world. I have written a number of books about policy economists and their lives in peace and wartime. (And a couple of novels too!)

Alan's book list on how economists agree and disagree amongst each other

Alan Bollard Why did Alan love this book?

This is the story of the momentous wartime meetings in New Hampshire that mapped out the new institutions that were to guide the global economy through the Cold War and after: the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. It is an absorbing intellectual battle between arrogant British aristocratic John Maynard Keynes and the scrappy US Treasury official Harry Dexter White. (Spoiler alert: White won, but spoiled his reputation by likely being a Soviet spy.)

By Benn Steil,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

When turmoil strikes world monetary and financial markets, leaders invariably call for 'a new Bretton Woods' to prevent catastrophic economic disorder and defuse political conflict. The name of the remote New Hampshire town where representatives of forty-four nations gathered in July 1944, in the midst of the century's second great war, has become shorthand for enlightened globalization. The actual story surrounding the historic Bretton Woods accords, however, is full of startling drama, intrigue, and rivalry, which are vividly brought to life in Benn Steil's epic account. Upending the conventional wisdom that Bretton Woods was the product of an amiable Anglo-American…


Book cover of The Marginal Revolutionaries: How Austrian Economists Fought the War of Ideas

Alan Bollard Author Of Economists at War: How a Handful of Economists Helped Win and Lose the World Wars

From my list on how economists agree and disagree amongst each other.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an economics professor at Victoria University of Wellington. As a previous Secretary of the New Zealand Treasury and Governor of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, I have had quite a bit of experience watching economists’ ideas succeed and fail in the real world. I have written a number of books about policy economists and their lives in peace and wartime. (And a couple of novels too!)

Alan's book list on how economists agree and disagree amongst each other

Alan Bollard Why did Alan love this book?

This is a heavier read taking us through a group history of the Austrian School of Economics from the coffee houses of Imperial Vienna to the modern-day Libertarians. Economists such as Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich Hayek, and Joseph Schumpeter originated ideas that have had a big impact on economics and politics, and have been much debated ever since.

By Janek Wasserman,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A group history of the Austrian School of Economics, from the coffeehouses of imperial Vienna to the modern-day Tea Party

The Austrian School of Economics-a movement that has had a vast impact on economics, politics, and society, especially among the American right-is poorly understood by supporters and detractors alike. Defining themselves in opposition to the mainstream, economists such as Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich Hayek, and Joseph Schumpeter built the School's international reputation with their work on business cycles and monetary theory. Their focus on individualism-and deep antipathy toward socialism-ultimately won them a devoted audience among the upper echelons of business…


Book cover of History of Economic Analysis

Panayotis G. Michaelides Author Of History of Economic Ideas: From Adam Smith to Paul Krugman

From my list on the evolution of economics.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Full Professor and Lab Director in Economics. My interest in this field began when I traveled abroad and observed the differences in prices, goods, and quality of life. In order to gain a deeper understanding, I decided to switch from my previous academic background in Engineering, Mathematics & Physics to Economics, Finance & Data Science. Today, I am dedicated to expanding my knowledge and sharing my insights through teaching, academic publications, and LinkedIn posts. According to the latest rankings, I am humbled to be among the top 3% most productive economists worldwide (IDEAS-RePec, 2023), as well as being ranked among the top 4% researchers in Financial Economics, and the top 5% in Econometrics (Researchgate, 2023).

Panayotis' book list on the evolution of economics

Panayotis G. Michaelides Why did Panayotis love this book?

Since my PhD was based on Schumpeter's work, I can confidently state that it is well worth exploring the fascinating world of Economics through one of history's greatest economists.

This masterpiece takes the reader on a journey through every corner of the subject, paying particular attention to even the smallest details. A unique and thought-provoking view of Economics is offered by Schumpeter in his over 1000 pages of brilliant insights.

This book distinguishes itself from others through its deep and unconventional interpretation of Economics. It is a must-read for anyone seeking a thorough understanding of Economics as Schumpeter provides fresh insights on various topics.

However, it would be much better if it covered more recent developments. Enjoy this tour of Economics with Schumpeter and you will never get bored!

By Joseph A Schumpeter, Elizabeth Boody Schumpeter (editor),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked History of Economic Analysis as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

At the time of his death in 1950, Joseph Schumpeter--one of the great economists of the first half of the 20th century--was working on his monumental History of Economic Analysis. A complete history of efforts to understand the subject of economics from ancient Greece to the present, this book is an important contribution to the history of ideas as well as to economics. Although never fully completed, it has gained recognition as a modern classic due to its broad scope and original examination of significant historical events. Complete with a new introduction by Mark Perlman, who outlines the structure of…


Book cover of Economic Theory in Retrospect

Thijs ten Raa Author Of Microeconomics: Equilibrium and Efficiency

From my list on microeconomics on how markets are interconnected.

Why am I passionate about this?

Microeconomics is a turnoff to most readers. Not without reason. Many books in this field are dull rewrites of other books and opaque.  In particular, it is not clear how the behavior of individual consumers and producers adds to the performance—good or bad—of an economy. The books listed here helped me to sharpen my own mind and to make my writing lucid.

Thijs' book list on microeconomics on how markets are interconnected

Thijs ten Raa Why did Thijs love this book?

Mark Blaug escaped the Netherlands, just in time before the Nazis marched in, went to New York University, and eventually wrote this colossal overview of the entire body of the economics literature. 

He is capable of ordering different formal approaches to the subject matter in plain English, what an achievement.

By Mark Blaug,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Economic Theory in Retrospect as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This is a history of economic thought from Adam Smith to John Maynard Keynes - but it is a history with a difference. Firstly, it is a history of economic theory, not of economic doctrines, that is, it is consistently focused on theoretical analysis, undiluted by entertaining historical digressions or biological colouring. Secondly, it includes detailed Reader's Guides to nine of the major texts of economics, namely the works of Smith, Ricardo, Mill, Marx, Marshall, Wickstead, Wicksell, Walras and Keynes, in the effort to encourage students to become acquainted at first hand with the writings of all the great economists.…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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