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January 11, 2008

Richard Florida

No Opposition Here

« Professor of Unhappiness | Main | Hmmmm ... »

We've already posted about The Opposable Mind by our friend and Dean, Roger Martin.

Over at This Blog Sits at the Intersection of Anthropology and Economics, Grant McCracken says some pretty nice things about Roger's book and muses about the differences between the US and Canada.

I was in Toronto yesterday doing ethnographic interviews on the topic of Canada and Canadianness. One of my respondents was Roger Martin, the dean of the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. Part way through the interview, Martin identified a paradox. He noted that Canadians who are creative and free thinking as individuals can become dramatically less creative in groups. Let's call this the Martin paradox.

(later in the post)

Martin gave me a copy of his new book, The Opposable Mind, which I read on the flight home from Toronto.  It's good.  Friends of this blog will have noticed that I am usually unkind to books in the business literature category.  I have drubbed Blue Ocean Strategy by Kim and Mauborgne, Lovemark by Roberts, The Long Tail by Chris Anderson, and the ideas of Zaltman, Rapaille and Sir John Hegarty.  I have even dared challenge Freakonomics.  I am, by this reckoning, a tough audience, but The Opposable Mind impressed me. 

Read the whole post here (and ignore the comments from people who want to argue about who's really Canadian and who isn't -- that's not the point of the post, but I guess it gives people something to argue about.).

posted by Kevin Stolarick


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I wonder if McCracken's tastes and reactions as a reviewer don' themselves reflect the Martin Paradox and the Martin Model. Could US and Canadian scholarship reflect different emphases and priorities? Might it be that there is greater incentive for cute ideas and what other have called cute-onomics in the US, while scholars and writers in Canada are interested in bigger and some would say more relevant problems. And might this itself reflect the relative economic and social trajectories of the two countries? I'm asking (not telling).

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