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Billions of Entrepreneurs: How China and India Are Reshaping Their Futures—and Yours Hardcover – December 24, 2007

ISBN-13: 978-1422103838 ISBN-10: 1422103838

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 353 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press (December 24, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1422103838
  • ISBN-13: 978-1422103838
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.3 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,156,021 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

The eye of this business-school professor for interesting stories is sharp and he offers illuminating explanations of why India and China work in the ways that they do. --The Economist, January 24, 2008

Khanna delivers a dense but lively blend of anecdotes and analysis. He shows how entrepreneurial spirit is transforming both these countries not only economically, but strengthening ties between the two. --Newsweek

...an objective and insightful comparison of China and India. --Foreign Affairs, May 1, 2008

About the Author

Tarun Khanna is the Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at the Harvard Business School in the Strategy group. He is a co-editor of the Journal of Economics and Management Strategy and the Journal of International Business Studies. He serves on the editorial boards of Administrative Science Quarterly, Strategic Management Journal, Organization Science, and the Asia-Pacific Journal of Management.

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Customer Reviews

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I'd recommend this book to anyone curious about India and China.
A. Ternet
By far it is the only book that weaves together with great ease economics, history, politics, and sociology that relates to these two large countries.
CHARLES DHANARAJ
His style makes the book appealing and interesting as he highlights the contrasts.
Donald Mitchell

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Rolf Dobelli HALL OF FAME on April 23, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This is a curious book, not really about entrepreneurship but rather about a broad range of cultural, social, historical and economic subjects involving and contrasting China and India, from 1.5 billion village dwellers to urbanites in Beijing and Mumbai. Tarun Khanna's text is part travelogue, part reflection, part history and part speculation about the future. Anyone who has read to any depth about China and India will not find all that much that is surprising here. However, getAbstract recommends this book with enthusiasm because of its nearly unique richness of anecdotes, variety of perspectives, color and range.
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Format: Hardcover
Professor Tarun Khanna describes and explains the social histories, lay cultures, religions, politics, infrastructures, resources, regional differences, and business successes and flops in China and India using personal observations, anecdotes, case histories, and statistics to help readers understand opportunities in Asia to access resources and enter markets there. His style makes the book appealing and interesting as he highlights the contrasts.

Rather than make a case for mirror images, Professor Khanna argues that good businesses will gain benefits from both countries by coordinating resources and market positions. His main example is a chapter explaining what General Electric has done in both countries.

I thought the best part of the book was arguing that natives of each country develop solutions for how to create more successful businesses. That's a point that few multinational companies are going to consider seriously enough.

I always enjoy reading about examples of superior business models, and this book is relatively rich in describing businesses that contain interesting twists on traditional ways of operating. I also didn't know the history of how many of the major new businesses in India got their start.

I hope that Professor Khanna will follow up this book with a narrower focus on the opportunities for small company entrepreneurs in both countries. I think he would do a fine job and the information would be valuable to a much larger audience than this book will probably command.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Trevor Cross on February 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Some good history and insight but nothing earth shattering. I was expecting more. The best parts deal with a variety of historical exchanges between China and India. But the book gets bogged down in too many areas and the writing style is a bit jilted and verbose. There also many references and quotations which can get tiresome and make the reading cumbersome. But the author has done an admirable job in addressing the linkage between China and India and what it might mean for the future (although the last chapter, which tries to tie it all together, left me flat).
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Being born and raised in India, married in the US to my beloved who is orignially from China, and currently living and raising our two kids in China for the last several years, I have had the opportunity to observe a lot of what this book talks about in an up-close and personal way. While I am impressed by the amount of research and effort that has obviously gone into this book, I am ultimately disappointed by the author's inability to transcend his own biases and the tendency to measure everything from what may be best called a "Western" viewpoint. The author's understanding of India is clearly much superior than his familiarity with China. China is a notoriously difficult onion to peel and I'm afraid the author does not get beyond a couple of outer layers. As a result, while the book has some interesting anecdotes and some valiant attempts at analysis, it fails in providing an objective and genuinely insightful comparison of the two countries and cultures. I found particularly galling the failure to adequately examine areas of radically different performance of the two nations in areas such as literacy, general health and nutrition, gender equality, social harmony, facility with the physical world, success in organized sports, and many other areas where China is outpacing India. There are some salient reasons for the differences, but you won't find them in this book. What analysis does exist, I would rate as average at best.

For those interested in understanding China and India and indeed Asia more deeply, I would recommend much more highly the work of Kishore Mahbubani, Dean of the Lee Kwan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By B Agarwal on February 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Khanna provides a broad and deep perspective on how China and India are changing the world we live in. This book is an easy read - and not just for area experts, businessmen, or academia - but for anybody and everybody who not only wants to understand what to expect from the world in the very near future, but how to successfully compete in this new world.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A. Ternet on June 24, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I was assigned to read this book for a MBA class on international competitive strategy. I found this book to be much more interesting to read than a "traditional" textbook, while retaining its academic roots. By the time I finished the book, my understanding of India and China's culture as well as each country's influence on the global economy was much richer than before.

One example:
A chapter in the book is dedicated to discussing India's and China's use of soft power and hard power. Soft power is defined as "the ability to get what you want through attraction rather than coercion or payments." The book is very successful in illustrating how India has mastered soft power by spreading its culture internationally through various channels (for example, Bollywood movies). Conversely, China has become very successful at using its economic and military resources to create desired results. Burma/Myanmar is used as an example due to the fact that this country has felt both India's soft power and China's hard power.

While this book is not inclusive of all apsects of China's and India's international influence, it's a great start. I'd recommend this book to anyone curious about India and China. It's a wide-ranging overview of each country's government and culture, which will be a great asset to anyone given the growing international influence of each country. If you're attending the Beijing Olympics, it'd be a perfect read on the flight to and from China.
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