Bob Wayland

Shameless Promotion

I wrote (with Paul Cole) Customer Connections: New Strategies for Growth (Harvard Business School Press, 1997) back in 1997 when people were beginning to realize the need to assess and manage customer relationships. To our happy surprise it is still in print and generating royalties. 
Jim Mulcahy and I just finished the draft manuscript for our new book, The Delightful Science: The True Nature of Economics. 

Adam Smith (pictured to the left) wrote The Wealth of Nations in 1776. It changed the world. In 1859 the racist historian Thomas Carlyle called economics "the dismal science" largely because economists such as J. S. Mill argued against practice of slavery. Since then Carlyle's smug denunciation has become a convenient shorhand for those who neither accept nor understand the nature of economics. Free markets, guided by Adam Smith's "invisible hand" have done more to improve people's welfare and increase happiness than any other force in the world. 

Our new book is an accessible tour of economics that corrects many misconceptions, refutes classical critics of property and markets such as Rousseau and Aristotle, and reveals some of the shoddy science behind popular management texts. We also discuss important and relevant economic concepts including evolutionary economics, modern trade theory, growth and development, and entrepreneurialism that most students are never exposed to in today’s typical, math-oriented introductory courses. 

We think many people will be attracted by our discussions of “non-economic” topics. These include the role played by trade in the rivalry between Cro-Magnon and Neanderthal, the enlightened economic and trade policies of Genghis Khan, Ben Franklin’s influence on Thomas Malthus’ thought and hence that of Charles Darwin, how economic game theory and biology explain both the Vampire bat’s reciprocal altruism and economic cooperation, how group selection and the need to punish defectors helps to explain the emergence of states and how gangs and governments emerge as suppliers in the market for personal protection. 

Click to see our manuscript.