Market Rebels: How Activists Make or Break Radical Innovations

Market Rebels: How Activists Make or Break Radical Innovations

Market Rebels: How Activists Make or Break Radical Innovations

Market Rebels: How Activists Make or Break Radical Innovations

Excerpt

The origins of this book are both profoundly personal and social. I became a teenager in India at a time of mobilization and contention in the mid-1970s. I lived in Visakhapatnam— a city where collective mobilization in the form of strikes and train blockades persuaded central planners in New Delhi to build a steel plant there. Later, the imposition of a state of emergency by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi also evoked social protest, which was suppressed but still found expression in elections where she was routed. Subsequently, collective action played a significant role in my experience as a student of industrial relations and human-resource management at a business school in India (XLRI, Jamshedpur) when the cafeteria workers went on strike and my classmates who were leading the student association mobilized us to cook food and clean dishes in a (successful) bid to break the strike by cafeteria workers.

My doctoral education in organizational behavior at Case Western Reserve University also emphasized the mobilization of employees to further organizational change. One day, however, a chance visit to the wrong floor of Sears Library led me to discover The Horseless Age and to discern how the automobile, once vilified by farmers and anti-speed . . .

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