Strategy books 📖

David J Carr
2 min readJan 17, 2019

Last week I shared a screengrab of a “mini-primer” of books about strategy on Twitter. Since then I’ve had a few requests for the text version plus a lot of good suggestions for ones I had missed. So here is the list…

*Sharpen Brain*

Sapient/Homo Deus – Harari

Technically Wrong – Sara Wachter-Boettcher

It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens — Dana Boyd

The Four-Dimensional Human – Laurence Scott

The Art of Looking Sideways – Alan Fletcher

Anything by Tufte

Anything by Mariana Mazzucato

Film Theory & Criticism – Mast/Cohen/Braudy

Cryptonomicon+Baroque Cycle – Neal Stephenson

Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World — Jane McGonigal

The Water Kingdom (secret history of China) – Philip Ball

Modern Literary Theory – Rice/Waugh

Moneyball — Michael Lewis

Silk Roads — Peter Frankopan

Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men — Caroline Criado Perez

*Innovation Strategy & digital world books*

The Wide Lens – Ron Adner

Anything by Shoshana Zuboff

Any of Clay Christensen’s “Dilemma” books

Meta Products – Rubino and others

Dark Matter & Trojan Horses – Dan Hill

The Patient will see you now – Topol

The 10 Types of Innovation” — Doblin

Strategyzer books (esp. Value Proposition)

Wardley Maps — Simon Wardley

Designing Interactions — Bill Moggridge

This is Service Design Thinking — Stickdorn/Schneider

Service Design: From Insight to Inspiration – Polaine/Løvlie/Reason

AI Superpowers – Kai-Fu Lee

*Business Strategy books*

Key Strategy Tools – Vaughan Evans

Strategy – Freedman

Playing to Win – Lafley

Good Strategy/Bad Strategy – Rumelt

Anything by Peter Drucker

*Comms/brand/marketing strategy books*

Marketing (Theory, Practice, Evidence) – Byron Sharp

Problem Solved – Michael Johnson

The Advertising Concept Book – Pete Barry

David Aaker’s books

How Brands Grow 1 & 2 — Byron Sharp, Byron Sharp and Jenni Romaniuk

Building Distinctive Brand Assets — Jenni Romaniuk

Hit Makers – Derek Thompson

The Choice Factory – Richard Shotton

Paid Attention – Faris Yakob

A Masterclass in Brand Planning – Lannon/Baskin (Eds.)

How not to Plan – Binet/Carter

Eat your Greens — Wiemer Snijders

The Halo Effect – Phil Rosenzweig



David J Carr

Strategy Director. ex-CD, Planning Director & Head of UX @ Digitas, DIG, Publicis, Chemistry & JWT. APG Gold & Google Planning Innovator of Year.