Summer Reading 2021

Still looking for the right book in your garden or on a trip? Vlerick’s Dean Professor Marion Debruyne’s annual summer booklists make it easy to find great books you will enjoy during summer.

Please visit the Vlerick library to borrow your summer books or to discover our entire collection.

How to Change - Katy Milkman

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


Set audacious goals. Foster good habits. Create social support. You’ve surely heard this advice before. If you’ve ever tried to change — to boost exercise or healthy eating, to prevent missed deadlines or kick-start savings — then you know there are thousands of apps, books, and YouTube videos promising guidance. And yet, you’re still not where you want to be.

This trailblazing book explains why. Milkman discovered a crucial thing many of us get wrong: our strategy. Through engaging stories and examples from Milkman’s cutting-edge research, this book illustrates how to identify and overcome the barriers that regularly stand in the way of change.

  • Title: How to Change: The Science of Getting from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be
  • Author: Milkman, Katy
  • ISBN: 9780593083758
  • Year: 2021
  • Publisher: Portfolio
How I Built This - Guy Raz

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


Great ideas often come from a simple spark: a football player on the New Zealand national team notices all the unused wool his country produces and figures out a way to turn them into shoes (Allbirds). A former Buddhist monk decides the very best way to spread his mindfulness teachings is by launching an app (Headspace). Award-winning podcast creator Guy Raz has interviewed more than 200 highly successful innovators from across the world, to uncover amazing true stories like these. He shares tips for every entrepreneur's journey: from the early days of formulating your idea, to raising money and recruiting employees, to finding your market and, finally, to paying yourself a real salary. This is a must-read for anyone who has ever dreamed of starting their own business.

  • Title: How I Built This: The Unexpected Paths to Success From the World's Most Inspiring Entrepreneurs
  • Author: Raz, Guy
  • ISBN: 9780358216766
  • Year: 2020
  • Publisher: London : Houghton Mifflin
No filter - Sarah Frier

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


Frier draws on unprecedented access from the founders of Instagram, as well as employees, executives, and competitors and a plethora of influencers worldwide to show how Instagram has fundamentally changed the way we show, eat, travel, and communicate, all while fighting to preserve the values which contributed to the company’s success. No Filter examines how Instagram’s dominance acts as lens into our society today, highlighting our fraught relationship with technology, our desire for perfection, and the battle within tech for its most valuable commodity: our attention.

  • Title: No filter: the inside story of Instagram
  • Frier, Sarah
  • ISBN: 9781982126810
  • Year: 2020
  • Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster
Making Great Strategy - Glenn R. Carroll, Jesper B. Sørensen

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


Making strategy requires undertaking major - often irreversible - decisions aimed at long-term success in an uncertain future. All leaders must formulate a clear course of action, yet many lack confidence in their ability to think systematically about their strategy. They struggle to apply the abstract lessons offered by conventional approaches to strategic analysis to their unique contexts.

In this book the authors show that one factor underlies all sustainably successful strategies: a logically coherent argument that connects resources, capabilities, and environmental conditions to desired outcomes. This book shows that while great strategic thinking is hard, it is not a mystery.

  • Title: Making Great Strategy: Arguing for Organizational Advantage
  • Author: Carroll, Glenn R.; Sørensen Jesper B.
  • ISBN: 9780231553155
  • Year: 2020
  • Publisher: Columbia Business School Publishing
The Power of Creative Destruction - Philippe Aghion, Céline Antonin, Simon Bunel

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


The authors draw on cutting-edge theory and evidence to examine today’s most fundamental economic questions, including the roots of growth and inequality, competition and globalization, the determinants of health and happiness, technological revolutions, secular stagnation, middle-income traps, climate change, and how to recover from economic shocks. A powerful and ambitious reappraisal of the foundations of economic success and a blueprint for change, The Power of Creative Destruction shows that a fair and prosperous future is ultimately ours to make.

  • Title: The Power of Creative Destruction : Economic Upheaval and the Wealth of Nations
  • Authors: Aghion, Philippe; Antonin, Céline; Bunel, Simon
  • ISBN: 9780674971165
  • Year: 2021
  • Publisher: Cambridge, Massachusetts : Harvard University Press
Better, Simpler Strategy - Felix Oberholzer-Gee

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


In ‘Better, Simpler Strategy,’ Harvard Business School professor Felix Oberholzer-Gee shows how companies achieve more by doing less. At a time when rapid technological change and global competition conspire to upend traditional ways of doing business, these companies pursue radically simplified strategies. At a time when many managers struggle not to drown in vast seas of projects and initiatives, these businesses follow simple rules that help them select the few ideas that truly make a difference. "Better, Simpler Strategy" provides readers with a simple tool, the value stick, which every organization can use to make its strategy more effective and easier to execute.

  • Title: Better, Simpler Strategy : A Value-Based Guide to Exceptional Performance
  • Author: Oberholzer-Gee, Felix
  • ISBN: 9781633699694
  • Year: 2021
  • Publisher: La Vergne : Harvard Business Review Press
Think Again - Adam Grant

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


Think Again is a must-read for anyone who wants to create a culture of learning and exploration, whether at home, at work, or at school... In an increasingly divided world, the lessons in this book are more important than ever. Organizational psychologist Adam Grant is an expert on opening other people's minds--and our own. With bold ideas and rigorous evidence, he investigates how we can embrace the joy of being wrong, bring nuance to charged conversations, and build schools, workplaces, and communities of lifelong learners. Think Again reveals that we don't have to believe everything we think or internalize everything we feel. It's an invitation to let go of views that are no longer serving us well and prize mental flexibility over foolish consistency. If knowledge is power, knowing what we don't know is wisdom.

  • Title: Think Again : The Power of Knowing What You Don't Know
  • Author: Grant, Adam
  • ISBN: 9781984878106
  • Year: 2021
  • Publisher: New York: Viking
Humor, seriously - Jennifer Aaker, Naomi Bagdonas

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


When we're kids we laugh all the time. The average four year-old laughs as many as 300 times a day, while the average forty year-old laughs 300 times every two and a half months! We grow up, start working and suddenly become "serious and important people", trading laughter for bottom lines and mind-dumbing zoom calls. Studies have shown that humour makes us appear more competent and confident, strengthens our relationships, unlocks creativity and boosts resilience during difficult times. Drawing on behavioural science, advice from world-class comedians and stories from top leaders, Humor, Seriously will show you how to harness the power of humour every day.

  • Title: Humor, seriously : why humor is a secret weapon in business and life : And how anyone can harness it. Even you.
  • Author: Aaker, Jennifer Lynn; Bagdonas, Naomi
  • ISBN: 9780593238424
  • Year: 2021
  • Publisher: New York : Currency
Connect - David Bradford, Carole Robin

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


The ability to create strong relationships with others is crucial to living a full life and becoming more effective at work. Yet many of us find ourselves struggling to build solid personal and professional connections or unable to handle challenges that inevitably arise when we grow closer to others.

David Bradford and Carole Robin taught interpersonal skills to MBA candidates and have coached and consulted hundreds of executives for decades. In Connect, they show readers how to take their relationships from shallow to exceptional by cultivating authenticity, vulnerability, and honesty, while being willing to ask for and offer help, share a commitment to growth, and deal productively with conflict.

  • Title: Connect : building exceptional relationships with family, friends and colleagues
  • Author: Bradford, David L.; Robin, Carole
  • ISBN: 9780241406809
  • Year: 2021
  • Publisher: London : Penguin Life
Grow the Pie - Alex Edmans

Vlerick Summer Reading List 2021


What is a responsible business? Common wisdom is that it's one that sacrifices profit for social outcomes. Based on the highest-quality evidence and real-life examples spanning industries and countries, Alex Edmans shows that it's not an either-or choice - companies can create both profit and social value. The most successful companies don't target profit directly, but are driven by purpose - the desire to serve a societal need and contribute to human betterment. The book explains how to embed purpose into practice so that it's more than just a mission statement, and discusses the critical role of working collaboratively with a company's investors, employees, and customers.

  • Title: Grow the pie : how great companies deliver both purpose and profit
  • Author: Edmans, Alex
  • ISBN: 9781108494854
  • Year: 2020
  • Publisher: New York, NY : Cambridge University Press

Need help?

Contact our Programme Advisor
Programme Advisor
Tel +3292109884
Find the programme most relevant for you!

Download our programme calendar

& Rankings

Equis Association of MBAs AACSB Financial Times