Description: The life and times of an enduring work of Jewish spirituality The Babylonian Talmud, a postbiblical Jewish text that is part scripture and part commentary, is an unlikely bestseller. Written in a hybrid of Hebrew and Aramaic, it is often ambiguous to the point of incomprehension, and its subject matter reflects a narrow scholasticism that should hardly have broad appeal. Yet the Talmud has remained in print for centuries and is more popular today than ever. Barry Scott Wimpfheimer tells the remarkable story of this ancient Jewish book and explains why it has endured for almost two millennia. Providing a concise biography of this quintessential work of rabbinic Judaism, Wimpfheimer takes readers from the Talmud's prehistory in biblical and second-temple Judaism to its present-day use as a source of religious ideology, a model of different modes of rationality, and a totem of cultural identity. He describes the book's origins and structure, its centrality to Jewish law, its mixed reception history, and its golden renaissance in modernity. He explains why reading the Talmud can feel like being swept up in a river or lost in a maze, and why the Talmud has come to be venerated--but also excoriated and maligned--in the centuries since it first appeared. An incomparable introduction to a work of literature that has lived a full and varied life, this accessible book shows why the Talmud is at once a received source of traditional teachings, a touchstone of cultural authority, and a powerful symbol of Jewishness for both supporters and critics.
Description: Guiding principles for ensuring that central bankers and other unelected policymakers remain stewards of the common good Central bankers have emerged from the financial crisis as the third great pillar of unelected power alongside the judiciary and the military. They pull the regulatory and financial levers of our economic well-being, yet unlike democratically elected leaders, their power does not come directly from the people. Unelected Power lays out the principles needed to ensure that central bankers, technocrats, regulators, and other agents of the administrative state remain stewards of the common good and do not become overmighty citizens. Paul Tucker draws on a wealth of personal experience from his many years in domestic and international policymaking to tackle the big issues raised by unelected power, and enriches his discussion with examples from the United States, Britain, France, Germany, and the European Union. Blending economics, political theory, and public law, Tucker explores the necessary conditions for delegated but politically insulated power to be legitimate in the eyes of constitutional democracy and the rule of law. He explains why the solution must fit with how real-world government is structured, and why technocrats and their political overseers need incentives to make the system work as intended. Tucker explains how the regulatory state need not be a fourth branch of government free to steer by its own lights, and how central bankers can emulate the best of judicial self-restraint and become models of dispersed power. Like it or not, unelected power has become a hallmark of modern government. This critically important book shows how to harness it to the people's purposes.
Description: How Enlightenment Europe rediscovered its identity by measuring itself against the great civilizations of Asia During the long eighteenth century, Europe's travelers, scholars, and intellectuals looked to Asia in a spirit of puzzlement, irony, and openness. In this panoramic and colorful book, Jürgen Osterhammel tells the story of the European Enlightenment's nuanced encounter with the great civilizations of the East, from the Ottoman Empire and India to China and Japan. Here is the acclaimed book that challenges the notion that Europe's formative engagement with the non-European world was invariably marred by an imperial gaze and presumptions of Western superiority. Osterhammel shows how major figures such as Leibniz, Voltaire, Gibbon, and Hegel took a keen interest in Asian culture and history, and introduces lesser-known scientific travelers, colonial administrators, Jesuit missionaries, and adventurers who returned home from Asia bearing manuscripts in many exotic languages, huge collections of ethnographic data, and stories that sometimes defied belief. Osterhammel brings the sights and sounds of this tumultuous age vividly to life, from the salons of Paris and the lecture halls of Edinburgh to the deserts of Arabia, the steppes of Siberia, and the sumptuous courts of Asian princes. He demonstrates how Europe discovered its own identity anew by measuring itself against its more senior continent, and how it was only toward the end of this period that cruder forms of Eurocentrism--and condescension toward Asia--prevailed. A momentous work by one of Europe's most eminent historians, Unfabling the East takes readers on a thrilling voyage to the farthest shores, bringing back vital insights for our own multicultural age.
Description: This book addresses the core challenges currently faced by traditional companies. In the age of digitization many industries are now challenged by disruptions of the traditional value chain: new competitors are coming into play, traditional products don't sell any more, and profits are at risk. As such, CEOs need to adopt new business models for these established industries, while many companies have to reinvent themselves by developing new products for new markets. In this book, leading CEOs share their experiences in transforming established companies. They provide insights on transforming industries and demonstrate what it takes to redefine companies from the ground up. Issues such as organizational transformation, new product development, implementing a new organizational spirit, and many more are discussed.
Description: This new and comprehensive volume covering the subfield of comparative political economy provides a detailed overview over its intellectual roots, clarifies its contents, and introduces the readers to key debates while identifying new and exciting avenues for future research. Ideas, interests,and institutions have traditionally been the main focus points of this field, but the volume argues that culture provides an additional and often neglected area, providing the "glue" that keeps national models of capitalism hanging together.The volume also develops pathways beyond the varieties of capitalism paradigm. Building on a thorough and rigorous review of comparative capitalisms and a synthesis of the research strands that have built the bedrock of this subfield, Comparative Political Economy explores the individual componentsof national models of capitalism and argues that these elements deserve closer scrutiny. Their permutations have been considerable over the past thirty years, and their study permits valuable insights both empirically and theoretically. The empirical coverage of the book includes chapters coveringindustrial relations, labour markets, systems of education and training, finance, welfare state, and debt. In the conclusion, research pathways forward are identified and the impact of energy security issues and environmental factors on the study of comparative capitalisms will be assessed.
Description: Why the dollar will remain the world's most powerful currency Monetary rivalry is a fact of life in the world economy. Intense competition between international currencies like the US dollar, Europe's euro, and the Chinese yuan is profoundly political, going to the heart of the global balance of power. But what exactly is the relationship between currency and power, and what does it portend for the geopolitical standing of the United States, Europe, and China? Popular opinion holds that the days of the dollar, long the world's dominant currency, are numbered. By contrast, Currency Power argues that the current monetary rivalry still greatly favors America's greenback. Benjamin Cohen shows why neither the euro nor the yuan will supplant the dollar at the top of the global currency hierarchy. Cohen presents an innovative analysis of currency power and emphasizes the importance of separating out the various roles that international money might have. After systematically exploring the links between currency internationalization and state power, Cohen turns to the state of play among today's top currencies. The greenback, he contends, is the "indispensable currency"--the one that the world can't do without. Only the dollar is backed by all the economic and political resources that make a currency powerful. Meanwhile, the euro is severely handicapped by structural defects in the design of its governance mechanisms, and the yuan suffers from various practical limitations in both finance and politics. Contrary to today's growing opinion, Currency Power demonstrates that the dollar will continue to be the leading global currency for some time to come.
Description: A close look at the evolution of American political alliances in Asia and their future While the American alliance system in Asia has been fundamental to the region's security and prosperity for seven decades, today it encounters challenges from the growth of China-based regional organizations. How was the American alliance system originally established in Asia, and is it currently under threat? How are competing security designs being influenced by the United States and China? In Powerplay, Victor Cha draws from theories about alliances, unipolarity, and regime complexity to examine the evolution of the U.S. alliance system and the reasons for its continued importance in Asia and the world. Cha delves into the fears, motivations, and aspirations of the Truman and Eisenhower presidencies as they contemplated alliances with the Republic of China, Republic of Korea, and Japan at the outset of the Cold War. Their choice of a bilateral "hub and spokes" security design for Asia was entirely different from the system created in Europe, but it was essential for its time. Cha argues that the alliance system's innovations in the twenty-first century contribute to its resiliency in the face of China's increasing prominence, and that the task for the world is not to choose between American and Chinese institutions, but to maximize stability and economic progress amid Asia's increasingly complex political landscape. Exploring U.S. bilateral relations in Asia after World War II, Powerplay takes an original look at how global alliances are achieved and maintained.
Description: In a constantly changing environment, businesses need to innovate and re-generate if they are to remain competitive. This book is intended to provide practical guidance on how to manage change successfully, be it large scale, such as cultural change, or slower, incremental change. Using the "compass of the intelligences", a unique device developed by the authors, Change Management Excellence shows the reader how to lead and navigate change by employing business, political, spiritual and emotional intelligence. Contents include: the business context for change the political environment and internal barriers to change developing a vision of the future recognizing and dealing with emotional reactions to change creating and implementing innovative ideas sustaining and embedding change Practical in approach, Change Management Excellence includes chapter-by-chapter checklists for the reader to use when implementing change. Written in an engaging style, it is also packed with international case studies illustrating how companies have successfully managed change.
Description: East Asia, until recently a boiling pot of massacre and blood-letting, has achieved relative peace. A region that at the height of the Cold War had accounted for around eighty percent of the world's mass atrocities has experienced such a decline in violence that by 2015 it accounted for lessthan five percent.This book explains East Asia's "other" miracle and asks whether it is merely a temporary blip in the historical cycle or the dawning of a new, and more peaceful, era for the region. It argues that the decline of mass atrocities in East Asia resulted from four interconnected factors: theconsolidation of states and emergence of responsible sovereigns; the prioritization of economic development through trade; the development of norms and habits of multilateralism, and transformations in the practice of power politics. Particular attention is paid to North Korea and Myanmar, countrieswhose experience has bucked regional trends largely because these states have not succeeded in consolidating themselves to the point where they no longer depend on violence to survive. Although the region faces several significant future challenges, this book argues that the much reduced incidenceof mass atrocities in East Asia is likely to be sustained into the foreseeable future.
Description: Penned by a 'literary banker' having spent four decades working for India's central bank RBI, this slim book furnishes a brief account of the history, establishment and working of Reserve Bank of India. It portrays brief biographical details, vignettes and contributions of all the Governors of the Bank from the first Sir Osborne Smith to the current Dr. Raghuram Rajan. It contains scintillating and crisp reviews of 27 books on Indian economy and banking written by RBI Executives and other renowned authorities; It has highly entertaining and revealing anecdotes of RBI and assessment of selected outstanding personalities in the RBI's Hall of Fame.
Description: In recent years diversity and its management has become a feature of modern and postmodern organizations. Different practices have spread around the globe focusing on the organizing and management of inclusion and exclusion of different groups such as men and women, heterosexual and homosexuals, persons with different racial and ethnic background, ages, and (dis)abilities. However, although increasingly recognized as important, the discourses of diversity are multifaceted and not without controversy. Furthermore, diversity management practices have the potential to reproduce both inclusion and exclusion. This book presents the foundations of organizing and managing diversities, offers multidisciplinary, intersectional and critical analyses on key issues, and opens up fresh perspectives in order to advance the diversity debate. The contributors are a team of leading diversity scholars from all over the world.
Description: From the New York Times bestselling author of Nudge and The World According to Star Wars, a revealing account of how today's Internet threatens democracy--and what can be done about it As the Internet grows more sophisticated, it is creating new threats to democracy. Social media companies such as Facebook can sort us ever more efficiently into groups of the like-minded, creating echo chambers that amplify our views. It's no accident that on some occasions, people of different political views cannot even understand one another. It's also no surprise that terrorist groups have been able to exploit social media to deadly effect. Welcome to the age of #Republic. In this revealing book, New York Times bestselling author Cass Sunstein shows how today's Internet is driving political fragmentation, polarization, and even extremism--and what can be done about it. He proposes practical and legal changes to make the Internet friendlier to democratic deliberation, showing that #Republic need not be an ironic term. Rather, it can be a rallying cry for the kind of democracy that citizens of diverse societies need most.
Description: Pessimists see distressed M&A . . . Optimists see distressed M&A Opportunities abound in "bankruptcy beauties"--both in good times and bad. Distressed mergers and acquisitions used to be the domain of a handful of specialists, who generated handsome profits by unlocking value in troubled companies. Now, you can learn the secrets for participating in these deals with knowledge and confidence. The Art of Distressed M&A provides the critical information needed to manage the unique complexities of buying, selling, and financing troubled companies. The Art of Distressed M&A arms you with creative solutions to seemingly impossible problems and helps you to avoid common pitfalls. This comprehensive guide enables you to: Understand the roles, rights, and responsibilities of debtors, secured creditors, unsecured creditors, advisors, trustees, and bankruptcy courts Navigate through complicated valuation, financing, legal, accounting, and tax issues Communicate effectively and make informed proposals in multiparty negotiations Create the optimal deal structure--from prepackaged plans of reorganization to 363 sales to loan-to-own transactions The Art of Distressed M&A also highlights practical examples using recent bankruptcy cases following the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 and is the first publication of its kind since The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010.
Description: An insider account of how researchers unraveled the mystery of the thawing Arctic In the 1990s, researchers in the Arctic noticed that floating summer sea ice had begun receding. This was accompanied by shifts in ocean circulation and unexpected changes in weather patterns throughout the world. The Arctic's perennially frozen ground, known as permafrost, was warming, and treeless tundra was being overtaken by shrubs. What was going on? Brave New Arctic is Mark Serreze's riveting firsthand account of how scientists from around the globe came together to find answers. In a sweeping tale of discovery spanning three decades, Serreze describes how puzzlement turned to concern and astonishment as researchers came to understand that the Arctic of old was quickly disappearing--with potentially devastating implications for the entire planet. Serreze is a world-renowned Arctic geographer and climatologist who has conducted fieldwork on ice caps, glaciers, sea ice, and tundra in the Canadian and Alaskan Arctic. In this must-read book, he blends invaluable insights from his own career with those of other pioneering scientists who, together, ushered in an exciting new age of Arctic exploration. Along the way, he accessibly describes the cutting-edge science that led to the alarming conclusion that the Arctic is rapidly thawing due to climate change, that humans are to blame, and that the global consequences are immense. A gripping scientific adventure story, Brave New Arctic shows how the Arctic's extraordinary transformation serves as a harbinger of things to come if we fail to meet the challenge posed by a warming Earth
Description: A compendium of analytic information on infrastructure finance, this book provides up-to-date treatment of deployable tools and techniques and practical applications of guidelines of the Reserve Bank of India and policies of the government of India on financing for infrastructure projects. It presents detailed financial methodologies for evaluating infrastructure projects, elucidating the fundamental principles, their applications and implications, the related risks and their mitigating strategies behind the assessment of such projects. The book will be useful to professionals engaged in various infrastructure sector projects such as roads and transportation, power, ports, airports, oil and gas pipelines, warehousing, urban infrastructure, water and sanitation, and more.
Description: How genes are not the only basis of heredity--and what this means for evolution, human life, and disease For much of the twentieth century it was assumed that genes alone mediate the transmission of biological information across generations and provide the raw material for natural selection. In Extended Heredity, leading evolutionary biologists Russell Bonduriansky and Troy Day challenge this premise. Drawing on the latest research, they demonstrate that what happens during our lifetimes--and even our grandparents' and great-grandparents' lifetimes--can influence the features of our descendants. On the basis of these discoveries, Bonduriansky and Day develop an extended concept of heredity that upends ideas about how traits can and cannot be transmitted across generations. By examining the history of the gene-centered view in modern biology and reassessing fundamental tenets of evolutionary theory, Bonduriansky and Day show that nongenetic inheritance--involving epigenetic, environmental, behavioral, and cultural factors--could play an important role in evolution. The discovery of nongenetic inheritance therefore has major implications for key questions in evolutionary biology, as well as human health. Extended Heredity reappraises long-held ideas and opens the door to a new understanding of inheritance and evolution.