Scarcity: The New Science of Having Less and How It Defines Our Lives
by Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir
In this provocative book based on cutting-edge research, Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir show that scarcity creates a distinct psychology for everyone struggling to manage with less than they need. Busy people fail to manage their time efficiently for the same reasons the poor and those maxed out on credit cards fail to manage their money. The dynamics of scarcity reveal why dieters find it hard to resist temptation, why students and busy executives mismanage their time, and why the same sugarcane farmers are smarter after harvest than before.
Once we start thinking in terms of scarcity, the problems of modern life come into sharper focus, and Scarcity reveals not only how it leads us astray but also how individuals and organizations can better manage scarcity for greater satisfaction and success.
“Extraordinarily illuminating…Mullainathan and Shafir have made an important, novel, and immensely creative contribution.” ―Cass R. Sunstein, The New York Review of Books
“Compelling, important…A handy guide for those of us looking to better understand our inability to ever climb out of the holes we dig ourselves, whether related to money, relationships, or time.” ―The Boston Globe
“[Scarcity offers] groundbreaking insights into…the effects of poverty on cognition and our ability to make choices about our lives.” ―Samantha Power, The Wall Street Journal
“This is a book to read–but not while you are watching something else at the same time.” ―Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google and coauthor of The New Digital Age
“Scarcity is a captivating book, overflowing with new ideas, fantastic stories, and simple suggestions that just might change the way you live.” ―Steven D. Levitt, coauthor
“Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir are stars in their respective disciplines, and the combination is greater than the sum of its parts. Together they manage to merge scientific rigor and a wry view of the human predicament. Their project has a unique feel to it: it is the finest combination of heart and head that I have seen in our field.” ―Daniel Kahneman, author of Thinking, Fast and Slow