Rebalancing Society: Radical Renewal Beyond Left, Right, and Center

Category: Book
By (author): Mintzberg, Henry
Subject:  BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / General
  POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Ideologies / Democracy
  POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Ideologies / General
  POLITICAL SCIENCE / Public Policy / Economic Policy
Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers
Published: January 2015
Format: Book-paperback
Pages: 160
Size: 8.46in x 5.73in x 0.50in
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Additional Notes

From The Publisher*Our world is out of balance, says Henry Mintzberg, and the consequences are proving fateful: the degradation of our environment, the demise of our democracies, and the denigration of ourselves, with greed having been raised to some sort of high calling. But we can set things right. Mintzberg argues that a healthy society is built on three balanced pillars: a public sector of respected governments, a private sector of responsible enterprises, and what he calls a plural sector of robust voluntary associations (nonprofits, NGOs, etc.). Communism collapsed because the public sector was overbearing-balance triumphed in 1989, not capitalism. But that misunderstanding has led to the private sector becoming overbearing in many countries, especially the United States, and this imbalance is wreaking havoc. Many governments are now so co-opted by their private sectors that they won't be able to lead the process of renewal. And corporate social responsibility, however laudable, cannot compensate for the corporate social irresponsibility we see all around us. So Mintzberg offers specific ideas for strengthening the plural sector, which has the inclination and the independence to lead radical renewal by challenging unacceptable practices and developing better ones. This means change must be led not by some "them" but by each of us and all of us-if we care about our planet and our progeny.
From The Publisher*Enough of the imbalance that is causing the degradation of our environment, the demise of our democracies, and the denigration of ourselves. Enough of the pendulum politics of left and right and paralysis in the political center. We require an unprecedented form of radical renewal. In this book Henry Mintzberg offers a new understanding of the root of our current crisis and a strategy for restoring the balance so vital to the survival of our progeny and our planet.

With the collapse of the communist regimes of Eastern Europe, Western pundits declared that capitalism had triumphed. They were wrong-balance triumphed. A healthy society balances a public sector of respected governments, a private sector of responsible businesses, and a plural sector of robust communities. Communism collapsed under the weight of its overbearing public sector.

Now the "liberal democracies" are threatened-socially, politically, even economically-by the unchecked excesses of the private sector.

Radical renewal will have to begin in the plural sector, which alone has the inclination and the independence to challenge unacceptable practices and develop better ones. Too many governments have been co-opted by the private sector. And corporate social responsibility can't compensate for the corporate social irresponsibility we see around us "They" won't do it. We shall have to do it, each of us and all of us, not as passive "human resources," but as resourceful human beings.

Tom Paine wrote in 1776, "We have it in our power to begin the world over again." He was right then. Can we be right again now? Can we afford not to be?
Biographical NoteHenry Mintzberg is the Cleghorn Professor of Management Studies at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. He has won numerous awards from prestigious business, government, and academic institutions and is the author of the bestselling books Simply Managing, The Rise and Fall of Strategic Planning, Managers Not MBAs, and Mintzberg on Management.