Best business books

All the books listed for the Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award

Big Data by Viktor Mayer-Schönberger, Kenneth Cukier

Big Data

Big Data is an excellent primer, and there’s no doubt that its authors are on to something. But what, exactly? Much of the fun comes from watching these two estimable sceptics let their hair down and indulge in a little breathless boosterism for a business audience. — Read the complete FT review

Synopsis

Since Aristotle, we have fought to understand the causes behind everything. But this ideology is fading. In the age of big data, we can crunch an incomprehensible amount of information, providing us with invaluable insights about the what rather than the why.

We’re just starting to reap the benefits: tracking vital signs to foresee deadly infections, predicting building fires, anticipating the best moment to buy a plane ticket, seeing inflation in real time and monitoring social media in order to identify trends. But there is a dark side to big data. Will it be machines, rather than people, that make the decisions? How do you regulate an algorithm? What will happen to privacy? Will individuals be punished for acts they have yet to commit?

In this groundbreaking and fascinating book, two of the world’s most-respected data experts reveal the reality of a big data world and outline clear and actionable steps that will equip the reader with the tools needed for this next phase of human evolution.