October 3, 2001
This groundbreaking book, by three world-renowned psychologists, reveals how professionals, in relentlessly market-driven times, can succeed in carrying out good work, work that is both expert and socially responsible.
What does it mean to carry out “good work”? What strategies allow us to maintain moral and ethical standards at a time when market forces have unprecedented power and work life is being radically altered by technological innovation? These questions are situated at the heart of this eagerly anticipated new book. Focusing on genetics and journalism – two fields that generate and manipulate information and thus affect our lives in myriad ways – the authors show how successful professionals, in their quest to build meaningful careers, exhibit “humane creativity” – high-level performance coupled with social responsibility. Over the last three years the authors have interviewed more than one hundred people in each field who are engaged in cutting-edge work. Probing goals and visions, obstacles and fears, and means of passing on their most cherished practices and values, the authors found sharp contrast between individuals from the two fields. Until now, geneticists’ values have not been seriously challenged by the demands of their work world, while journalists are deeply disillusioned by the conflict between commerce and ethics. The dilemmas these professionals face and the strategies they choose in their search for a moral compass offer valuable guidance on how all people can transform their professions and their lives. Illustrated with numerous stories of real people facing hard decisions, Good Work offers powerful insight into one of the most important issues of our time and, indeed, into the future course of science, technology, and communication.
Howard Gardner is Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education, Chairman of the Steering Committee of Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and Adjunct Professor of Neurology at the Boston University School of Medicine. He is the author of eighteen books, including Frames of Mind, Creating Minds, Leading Minds, Multiple Intelligences and Intelligence Reframed. He has been honored with the MacArthur “Genius” award, the University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award and eighteen honorary doctorates. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (pronounced “CHICK-sent-me-high”) is currently professor at the Drucker School of Management at Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, California and former Professor and Chairman of the Department of Psychology at the University of Chicago. His previous books include the bestselling Flow, Being Adolescent, The Evolving Self, Creativity, Finding Flow and Becoming Adult. He is a member of the National Academy of Education, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Leisure Sciences he lives in Claremont, California.
William Damon is Professor of Education and Director of the Center on Adolescence at Stanford University. For the past twenty years, Damon has written widely on moral development at all ages of human life. His books include Self-Understanding in Childhood and Adolescence, The Moral Child, Some Do Care, and most recently, The Youth Charter. Damon has received awards from many foundations, including the John D. And Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and the John Templeton Foundation. He lives in Palo Alto, California.