DUE DATE: March 29, 2017
Changing the way consumers purchase, eat, and discard food is important for creating a more sustainable food system.
There are a number of notable publications that have been produced that relate to the future of our food system. As
experts in the field, it is important that we stay up to date with the latest information and theories on the topic.
In addition, in this course we are focusing on a number of management principles and techniques, for both personal
management, as well as in an organization.
Please choose one of the following books that identify and explain the problems in the food system—and how to make
changes or a book that speaks to management techniques.
Once you have read the book, please prepare at least 20 minute presentation that outlines:
Summary of the book
Critique of the book: strengths/weakness
How does the book apply to the concepts we have been discussing in class
TOTAL = 50 points
Presentation style-Confidence, eye contact, engagement,
flow, audible, organized
Engaging, creative and interesting
Content-knowledgeable and provides valuable
Abides by time limit (15 minutes)
FOOD SYSTEMS BOOKS:
4. Foodopoly: The Battle Over the Future of Food and Farming in America by Wenonah Hauter
A farmer from Virginia and an advocate for healthy eating, Hauter explores the “corporate, scientific, industrial,
and political” aspects of our food system in an effort to understand the problems with mainstream production
and distribution systems, and how to fix them in order to incorporate healthy, mindful eating.
5. Behind the Kitchen Door by Saru Jayaraman
Exploring the food system from a different angle, Jayaraman points to the deeply troubling labor practices that
exist in the food industry. With personal stories and interviews, Jayaraman unveils the low wages and grueling
positions that farm and kitchen workers endure.
6. The Last Hunger Season: A Year In An African Farm Community On The Brink Of Change by Roger Thurow
Thurow spent a year with four women smallholder farmers in western Kenya to document their struggles in
supporting and feeding themselves and their families. He evaluates the extent to which the work of initiatives
like the One Acre Fund can help these farmers pull themselves up and defeat hunger and poverty.
8. The Urban Food Revolution: Changing the Way We Feed Cities by Peter Ladner
According to the World Health Organization, more than half of the world’s population now lives in cities. The
Urban Food Revolution looks at the ways in which urban food systems need to change in order to become
healthier and more sustainable
9. Diet for a Hot Planet: The Climate Crisis at the End of Your Fork and What You Can Do About It by Anna
Anna Lappe’s Diet for a Hot Planet outlines the ways in which the current food system contributes to climate
change, the barriers to a true reform, and what consumers can do to provoke change.
10. WASTE: Uncovering the Global Food Scandal by Tristram Stuart
Uncovering waste in production and processing, the role of supermarkets in passing on wastefulness to
suppliers and consumers, and consumers’ wasteful practices at home, Stuart’s book explores the many
pathways of waste that exist in our food system. Even better, his book provides examples of countries where the
food system is working, and offers tips on reducing and reusing our food.
11. The Backyard Homestead: Produce all the food you need on just a quarter acre! edited by Carleen Madigan
The Backyard Homestead tells would-be farmers how to farm on just a quarter of an acre.
12. The Perfect Protein: The Fish Lover's Guide to Saving the Oceans and Feeding the World by Andy Sharpless
Sharpless argues that seafood will be the best source of sustainable protein for a rapidly growing global
population. And he highlights the importance of protecting the health and biodiversity of wild fish populations.
13. The Essential Urban Farmer by Novella Carpenter and Willow Rosenthal
For those without a backyard, the Essential Urban Farmer is the essential tutorial to begin growing food in cities.
The Manager’s Bookshelf: A Mosaic of Contemporary Views by Jon L. Pierce, John W. Newstrom
This book reads like an exquisite tasting menu – with excerpts from 48 management best sellers woven together
in sections on motivation, teamwork, change, and decision-making. If you want quick and broad exposure to the
best of the best, start here. It’s also a great place to start if you’re building a business library and want to know
which books to pick up first.
Talent is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else by Geoff Colvin
Written by Fortune Magazine’s Senior Editor at Large, this book is a gold mine. Colvin distills the pervasive myth
that great leadership requires inborn talent. Focus on chapters 4-8, which discuss ‘deliberate practice’ – one of
the best tools for any manager at any level
Picks for Personal and Professional Growth
The following books are designed for personal growth, but the lessons learned apply just as well to work as they
do to life:
The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are by
Managers, like everyone else, have hang-ups. Hang-ups like needing to be liked or needing to be ‘right’ all the
time can get managers into trouble (or is it just me?). This isn’t a management book, but you’ll find yourself
becoming a better leader as you settle into your own skin.
Steering by Starlight: The Science and Magic of Finding Your Destiny by Martha Beck
Authenticity is one of the marks of a great leader. Both deep and surprisingly funny, this book will help you
reconnect with your authentic self. Apply what you learn to develop your own authentic management style and
you’ll find yourself a happier and more effective leader. I use principles from this book in my coaching practice
all the time.
Tried and True Classics
I said we shouldn’t waste time talking about the undisputed classics. I take it back. These two books are simply
too good not to mention. Read them. Immediately, if possible:
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons In Personal Change by Stephen R. Covey
This book addresses the human side of management. Covey discusses the importance of fairness, integrity,
honesty, and dignity, and argues that the habits of successful leaders take place where knowledge, skill and
desire intersect. This book will help you add self-awareness and strategy to your leadership toolkit.
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
This management book stands the test of time like no other (the first edition was published in 1936!). While the
title may suggest that management means manipulation, Carnegie’s real message is that people need to feel
important and appreciated – simple advice that rings as true today as it did 80 years ago.
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