Summary of Common Wealth

Economics for a Crowded Planet

First Edition: 2008 more...

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Common Wealth book summary
Global warming, severe poverty – the outlook is grim. But with sacrifice and wisdom, humankind still can save the planet.


9 Overall

10 Importance

8 Innovation

9 Style


Famed economist Jeffrey Sachs manages to deliver pessimistic news in an optimistic way. Yes, the Earth faces dire threats from global warming, poverty, war, deforestation and mass extinctions. Yet Sachs asserts that these severe problems are manageable. Fixing them will cost $840 billion – a massive amount indeed, but, as Sachs argues, only 2.4% of the rich world’s gross national product. Sachs doesn’t shy away from politically touchy pronouncements. He argues against the U.S. war in Iraq and for legalized abortion. Still, throughout the fray, his book strikes the unlikely balance of delivering a message that’s both frightening and promising. getAbstract recommends this book to anyone seeking insight into the world’s most pressing problems.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why the Earth is in grave danger;
  • Why the damage still is reversible; and
  • How you can help.


The World’s Economy and Ecology Teeter on the Brink
The world has become an ever-more crowded, chaotic and dangerous place. Global populations are soaring, particularly in poor nations least able to feed and support burgeoning numbers of people. The global ecology is teetering near collapse...
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About the Author

Internationally known economist Jeffrey Sachs directs The Earth Institute at Columbia University. He’s a special adviser to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on the U.N.’s Millennium Development Goals. Sachs also wrote The End of Poverty.

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