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Coolhunting: Chasing Down the Next Big Thing Hardcover – April 4, 2007

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Coolhunting: Chasing Down the Next Big Thing + Coolfarming: Turn Your Great Idea into the Next Big Thing + Swarm Creativity: Competitive Advantage through Collaborative Innovation Networks
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

MIT Sloan School of Management vets Gloor and Cooper strip "cool" of its cool in this half-baked introductory lesson to trendspotting. Beginning with a definition of "cool" that includes "excellent," "fun" and "makes the world a better place, in some way," the authors show how the excellent, fun iPod is truly cool because it's "keeping kids out of trouble." Strung together with the thinnest of strings, this textbook-style read covers a double-handful of basic new media concepts, including the "swarm," a future-predicting, trendsetting collectivity; the "coolhunters" who get down in the trenches, uncovering those swarms; and the "coolfarmers," nurturing know-it-alls who encourage the fruition of nascent creativity. Redundancy creeps in early, as the repetition of these terms-along with the mantra, "don't be a star, be a galaxy"-may lead readers to question whether Gloor and Cooper have a grasp on the latest trends in trendspotting. The authors' advice-brainstorm with others, the best ideas come from unlikely places, etc.-is mostly familiar, having been put to use by everyone from Ben Franklin to Google, but at least it's reliable.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


"Coolhunting reports on useful techniques for helping to see what’s coming.Wrap it in a plain brown wrapper,and read it surreptitiously." -- Tom Davenport, Harvard Business Online

"...Coolhunting is a skill we all need to master. This book, entertaining and informative..., is a terrific place to start." --Jack Covert, 800-CEO-READ Blog

“Marketers, especially the online variety, and anyone else chasing what’s cool, will want to read the new AMACOM book Coolhunting .” -Ted Kinni, Reading Writing Management Blog

“If success in business means determining your core business and then adapting that core as our customers' needs change quickly, then coolhunting is a skill we all need to master. This book, entertaining and informative about current culture, is a terrific place to start.”

-Jack Covert, 800-CEO-READ Blog

“Coolhunting is an entirely different experience and targets those of us who are fascinated by social networks, how they work, and what's ‘cool.’" --

“Gloor and Cooper provide a real-world, practical approach to hunting something as elusive and illusory as 'coolness'.” -- Soundview Executive Book Summaries

“The authors write in a style that is easy for those outside of their cutting-edge mindset to understand." --Midwest Book Review

“Helping to ‘elucidate the culture of cool’ this book is fascinating… based on solid and credible field research…“ – Inside Retailing

“…For those keen to mine the wealth of information available in online communities…virtues of social network analysis are clearly demonstrated…an inspiring read…”-- B&T Weekly

“There are many layers to this book, but readers will leave convinced that social networks hold the key to the future.” – BizEd magazine

“An invaluable tool for businesses of all sizes…will show you how to stay ahead of the curve and on the cutting edge.” -- Strictly

See all Editorial Reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: AMACOM; First Edition edition (April 4, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0814473865
  • ISBN-13: 978-0814473863
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,574,618 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I am doing research at the Center for Collective Intelligence at MIT. I also teach how to become a creative member of Collaborative Innovation Networks at University of Cologne and at Helsinki University of Technology.
Besides I am involved in the development of TeCFlow, a software tool for dynamic social network analysis. Until the end of 2002, I was a Partner with Deloitte Consulting, leading its E-Business practice for Europe. Before that, I was a Partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers and the manager for Software Engineering at Union Bank of Switzerland.
Much earlier I was a Post-Doc at MIT and got a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Zurich.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This book was a tough read. When I finished it I asked myself "Why did I read it?" And I asked myself "What did I get from it?" I know I read it thinking there would be some good insight provided into how to identify trends and trendsetters so a reasonably quick profit could be made by jumping on the bandwagon. And now that I have finished the book I know that I certainly didn't get what I was looking for.

As far as I am concerned, the book uses too much of its own terminology and has to spend too much time defining terms. And the authors cite too many names and specific instances instead of smoothing over all of that and telling a simple easily digestible story. The title of the book is "Coolhunters." And that is fine. But why was there so much coverage of "Coolfarmers" in the book. That was a sideshow, and should have been left out in my humble opinion.

Basically I learned that coolhunters are seekers of trends and trendsetters. A coolfarmer is a leader of trendsetters. Swarm creativity is creativity resulting from a collective mindset. And Collaborative Innovation Networks (COINs) are teams of trendsetters who share ideas, information, and work in order to produce swarm creativity. Then social networks are cited as an example of some COINs. But so what? I still need to have all this pulled together for me so I can recommend the book to someone interested in starting a business or make their business better. I can't do that!

This book had 10 chapters as follows:

1. Why "cool" matters
2. Swarm creativity creates cool trends
3. Swarms can better predict the future
4. About trendsetters
5. Coolhunters look for coolfarmers
6. When swarms go mad
7. Do-it-yourself coolhunting with technology
8. Coolhunting by automated social network analysis
9. Five steps to becoming a coolfarmer
10. The coming world of swarm creativity
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Angelica Marte on June 2, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Review for "Coolhunting: Chasing Down the Next Big Thing" by Peter Gloor & Scott Cooper, New York, published by AMACOM 2007, 1. Edition, 236 pages.

The title of the book keeps its promise by chasing down the next big thing: coolhunting. It is a very well grounded in theory, though fun and inspiring book to read about coolhunting for coolhunting, a subject becoming a big subject (June 1, 07: 807,000 google hits). As described by the authors, coolhunting "is not as simple as the simple description - uncovering the source of trends - often given". Coolhunting also investigates how groups of people work together to innovate in so called COINs (Collaborate Innovative Networks), nourished by swarm creativity.

Both authors are renowned, much valued scientists in their respective fields, who published extensively on different interdisciplinary topics. Peter Gloor has many years of experience in management. This strong foundation enables an academically profound and comprehensive book with illustrative examples and inspiring stories about an intriguing, and in many ways paradox issue. Paradox, because "cool" products, themes, issues, designs, ideas etc. are not for everybody, as upon becoming public knowledge they actually loose their "cool" factor. This is the paradox the book is dealing with in a very open, dedicated, and informative way (and perhaps not everybody wants that secrets like this are broken). Beyond, with Social Network Analysis one can even visualize the process how groups of people collaborate, communicate, and innovate. As the authors state: "There can never be too much communication! And talk in galaxy, not as stars!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Roger Bauer on June 10, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was a bit long winded for me personally although I eventually reached the objective. The authors do a great job of explaining their theories from every possible angle and make it very understandable for just about anyone due to the numerous examples, case studies, and antidotes.

My main (and only) complaint is that it took quite a bit of time to get to the "meat" of the book as the background and examples of group dynamics dominate the better part of the book. I admit and agree that it's important to establish the background the authors have, but it could have been done in fewer pages with fewer examples in my opinion.

Overall, I'd recommend the book to idea and trend seeking types. Just understand you'll not be discovering new trends and the next big thing immediately. If you understand social networking and how groups interact to become a "mind of one," you might be able to skim the first portions of the book and jump right into the practice of "Coolhunting."
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Marco De Maggio on June 8, 2007
Format: Hardcover
"Coolhunting: Chasing Down the Next Big Thing" by Peter Gloor & Scott Cooper, AMACOM, New York, 2007. Review.

Reading this bright book is a recommended experience. For three main reasons.

First, it contains a refined abstraction of the human and social mechanisms that by far from we are in existence are the basis of human evolution. That is to point that at the individual side it is not just information exchange that determines the growing patterns of culture and civilization, what we call "trends", but the interaction experience of the "ego" in reality; and, at the collective side, the awareness to be part of a continuously changing collective universe that makes this process the "world experience". As far as we can predict from individual experience the individual evolution in personality, attitudes, choices and performance, from this collective sense of interaction we can track the processes and dynamics that are the premises of the world of tomorrow. We can predict the future.

So the first simple revelation of the work is right a truth: every role we are going to have in the process of trends emersion, leaders or followers, writers or readers, speakers or listeners, observers or proposers, we are all part of it, inevitably. Awareness is the first point.

Second, the authors develop very further these assumptions in a really concrete way.

The choice, they say, of the role to have in the collective interaction experience relies not only on who we are, our personal characteristics, attitudes and natural instinct.

It may be a conceived rational choice, that starts from the awareness of the creativity developed in a "swarm dimension" toward the owning of the way of managing, rather then following, the process.
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