Why Most Things Fail by Paul Ormerod
Evolution, Extinction and Economics

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With the same originality and astuteness that marked his widely praised Butterfly Economics, Paul Ormerod now examines the “Iron Law of Failure” as it applies to business and government–and explains what can be done about it.

“Failure is all around us,” asserts Ormerod. For every General Electric–still going strong after more than one hundred years–there are dozens of businesses like Central Leather, which was one of the world’s largest companies in 1912 but was liquidated in 1952. Ormerod debunks conventional economic theory–that the world economy ticks along in perfect equilibrium according to the best-laid plans of business and government–and delves into the reasons for the failure of brands, entire companies, and public policies. Inspired by recent advances in evolutionary theory and biology, Ormerod illuminates the ways in which companies and policy-setting sectors of government behave much like living organisms: unless they evolve, they die. But he also makes clear how desirable social and economic outcomes may be achieved when individuals, companies and governments adapt in response to the actual behavior and requirements of their customers and constituents.

Why Most Things Fail is a fascinating and provocative study of a truth all too seldom acknowledged.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Paul Ormerod

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Paul Omerod has been head of the Economic Assessment Unit at The Economist and a visiting professor at the Universities of London and Manchester. He lives in Londom.
Published December 18, 2007 by Pantheon. 274 pages
Genres: Business & Economics. Non-fiction

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Publishers Weekly

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Businesses collapse just as surely as people do, yet economics textbooks and financial reporters stubbornly concentrate on success rather than failure. Ormerod (Butterfly Economics) argues this outloo

Feb 27 2006 | Read Full Review of Why Most Things Fail: Evoluti...

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