The Seventh Sense: Power, Fortune, and Survival in the Age of Networks

The Seventh Sense: Power, Fortune, and Survival in the Age of Networks

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by Joshua Cooper Ramo
     
 

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
WASHINGTON POST BESTSELLER

From the author of the international bestseller THE AGE OF THE UNTHINKABLE comes a powerful new story of revolution and riches in a connected age.

Endless terror. Refugee waves. An unfixable global economy. Surprising election results. New billion-dollar fortunes.

Overview

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
WASHINGTON POST BESTSELLER

From the author of the international bestseller THE AGE OF THE UNTHINKABLE comes a powerful new story of revolution and riches in a connected age.

Endless terror. Refugee waves. An unfixable global economy. Surprising election results. New billion-dollar fortunes. Miracle medical advances. What if they were all connected? What if you could understand why? The Seventh Sense examines the historic force now shaking our world—and explains how our leaders, our businesses, and each of us can master it.

All around us now we are surrounded by events that are difficult to understand. But every day, new figures and forces emerge that seem to have mastered this tumultuous age. Sometimes these are the leaders of the most earthshaking companies of our time, accumulating billion-dollar fortunes. Or they are successful investors or our best generals. Other times, however, quick success is going to terrorists, rebels, and figures intent on chaos. What if we could know the secret of those who can make sense of this age? What if we could apply it to the questions that worry us most?

In this groundbreaking new book, Joshua Cooper Ramo, author of the international bestseller The Age of the Unthinkable, introduces a powerful way of seeing the world. The Seventh Sense is the story of what all of today's successful figures see and feel—forces that are invisible to most of us but explain everything from explosive technological change to uneasy political ripples. The secret to power now is understanding our new age of networks—not merely the Internet but also networks of trade and DNA and finance. Based on his years of advising generals, CEOs, and politicians, Ramo takes us into the opaque heart of our world's rapidly connected systems and teaches us what the victors of this age know—and what the losers are not yet seeing.

But The Seventh Sense won't merely change the way you see the world. It will also give you the power to change it.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Praise for The Seventh Sense

"The next president needs to read The Seventh Sense, starting on the morning of November 9th. Joshua Ramo's latest book is a fascinating guide to the way the world is changing."—Malcolm Gladwell, author of David and Goliath"

Joshua Cooper Ramo has written a book that combines historic sweep and incisive detail. A great book, and a useful one. The Seventh Sense is a concept every businessman, diplomat, or student should aspire to master — a powerful idea, backed by stories and figures that will be impossible to forget."—Walter Isaacson, author of Steve Jobs and The Innovators"

If this book were read and understood by our next president, America would be a stronger country and the president would have an agenda for global leadership. Ramo's fascinating work serves a critical public purpose."—Bill Bradley"

Joshua Cooper Ramo has a unique intelligence and a unique voice, which illuminate this fascinating book. The central new reality of the world we live in today is connectivity. People, computers, other machines, almost everything is getting linked and these new networks are spewing oceans of information. How should we navigate this brave new world? Ramo writes with ease and authority about the technology, history , and foreign policy of this power shift, giving us an essential guide for the future."—Fareed Zakaria, author of In Defense of a Liberal Education"

In this hyper networked world remade fresh every day, with new perils and new opportunities, there is one book to be sure to read: Joshua Ramo's new book, a masterpiece, The Seventh Sense. To understand the tsunami of the networked age, you need history, biography, tech, philosophy, politics—and you want a book that has a depth beyond whatever else you could be streaming, podcasting, or wiki-ing. This is that book."—Reid Hoffman, Chairman/Founder of LinkedIn and Partner at Greylock"

The Seventh Sense ultimately isn't just about witnessing the power of human connections, but also harnessing that power to change the world. Highly recommended."—Midwest Book Review"

Provocative reading... [Ramo] offers plenty of interesting scenarios for such things as global power shifts, AI-enabled weapons systems, and the like.... For policy wonks with an eye toward the middle term, Ramo provides a good effort to make sense of it all."—Kirkus Reviews"

This book is the best yet on reviewing the ever more tightly woven, connected, pervasive networks - accelerating due to their interactivity - that now dominate our globalized human societies.... Ramo surveys this new world of interconnected networks in penetrating detail with deep knowledge of current global geopolitics and human history."—Hazel Henderson, Seeking Alpha

Kirkus Reviews
2016-05-02
Salutary futuristic reading for those still inclined to "use a mechanical way of thinking in an age of complexity."Has there ever been an age without complexity and confusion? Probably not. However, as Kissinger Associates CEO Ramo (The Age of the Unthinkable: Why the New World Disorder Constantly Surprises Us And What We Can Do About It, 2009, etc.) writes, this is a time of disruption that lends itself to "seventh sense" thinking—in less trendy terms, the ability to discern how things connect to other things in nodes and networks, "to look at any object and see the way in which it is changed by connection." These networks can be benign; they can be useful, as in digitized library connections; and they can be harmful, in part owing to the "hyperdense concentrations of power" that are produced by networks, introducing opportunities for chaos and complexity into situations that are already fraught with them. Ramo quotes approvingly from the philosopher Paul Virilio in this regard: "When you invent the ship, you also invent the shipwreck." Shipwrecks are all around us, as witness the network that is the Islamic State group, something that old-school thinking might imagine can be fought by air forces and bunker-buster bombs but that the Seventh Sensible would know requires different tools for dismantling. Ramo is sometimes vague but sometimes profound in a postmodern way that's not the usual stuff of Washington think tanks: we have been busy "murdering the exotic," he writes, with our first-world technologies and high-speed Internet connections, so we shouldn't be surprised when "from time to time, the exotic shows up and murders us right back." It all makes for provocative reading, and if the author is light on specifics, he offers plenty of interesting scenarios for such things as global power shifts, AI-enabled weapons systems, and the like. Plus ça change? No, the more it changes, the weirder the world gets. For policy wonks with an eye toward the middle term, Ramo provides a good effort to make sense of it all.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316285063
Publisher:
Little, Brown and Company
Publication date:
05/17/2016
Pages:
352
Sales rank:
18,662
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.40(d)

Meet the Author

Joshua Cooper Ramo is the author of the international bestseller The Age of the Unthinkable. He is co-chief executive officer and vice chairman of Kissinger Associates and a member of the board of directors of FedEx and Starbucks. His first book, No Visible Horizon, chronicled his experiences as a competitive aerobatic pilot.

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The Seventh Sense: Power, Fortune, and Survival in the Age of Networks 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Lemaire 5 months ago
This book takes a refreshing and large-scale look at the way the web is reshaping our world. It discloses the way that connecting things by networks changes the nature of those things — banking for instance. The author, Ramo, is hampered at times by the myopia of a right-wing ideologue. Don't forget he worked for the Kissinger Associates think tank. Case in point, in Chapter II, 'The Age of Network Power', his discussion of the 2008-2009 financial meltdown. In Part 3 of this chapter, he ignores the insights of Paul Krugman: the need for increasing demand through real infrastructure spending. That is, for economic stimulus. He awkwardly dances around that idea even as he notes correctly that trickle-down supply-side economics did not work. Then in Ramo's discussion of Austrian economist Friedrich Hayek in Chap. II part 6. Hayek told about the dichotomy between personnal autonomy and the power of the market versus the tyranny of central government planning. Influenced by the rise of facism he witnessed in 1938 Europe. Hayak and Ramo completely miss the role of the commons, and the successful way Western Europe today has combined personal autonomy with a large government function. Other than these objections, this is a brilliant book. It details the ways that the web now pervades our world. It explains the way connection changes the character of the things being connected. Large-scale, web pervades the way the world works. The author gives a brief history of the web's origins in the RAND corporation. And says that in the future, the web will be even more pervasive.
mspec 11 months ago
The Seventh Sense addresses the fourth phase of the American narrative, power and broader strokes of global order using a bit of history, philosophy, national security and Silicon Valley, a mix not solely relegated to business or how-to but an authentic survey of the world around usa nd the sense needed to master it. The book properly equips readers to address the challenges of ISIS, the opportunities of AI, the power of stateless currencies like Bitcoin and the forces of ideologues like Donald Trump, all with a dose of creative prose and vignettes from a global career. The Seventh Sense represents the critical framework for leaders to make sense of and shape their work to a rapidly evolving world. The book uncovers, moves between, makes relevant and elevates new and familiar voices in fresh ways– Master Nan, AT&T's Paul Baran, Thomas Jefferson, Occupy Wall St.; Ramo's insights, particularly the New Caste and the constructs of Hard Gatekeeping, have the potential to become lingua franca for public intellectuals, explained with a deftness of prose that draws upon Ramo's years as a journalist navigating some of the most complex issues of our time. Ramo doesn't overly fetishize technology and the future – he provides ample areas of caution – and most importantly identifies original opportunities within and beyond the networks these machines connect. There is a thoroughness here that others in this category lack – and I imagine this book will become one that business leaders and political mavens to explain this era, as it will for me.