Adrian Wooldridge

Adrian Wooldridge began writing The Economist’s Schumpeter column in September 2009, and his 1,000-word weekly commentaries (named after Joseph Schumpeter, the Austrian-born Harvard University economics professor) have become required reading for CEOs, management gurus, politicians, and students alike. Global in scope, Wooldridge’s insightful writing relentlessly attacks the conventional thinking found in business schools and c-suites. He compared the world of management theory with medieval Christianity, noting that, “Management theorists sanctify capitalism in much the same way that clergymen of yore sanctified feudalism.” One column called out companies for their “shabby treatment of introverts,” while another analyzed the efficient management methods adopted by a collection of Italian gangs running a criminal empire. Wooldridge excoriated businesses for embracing collaboration without acknowledging the “soft costs” of such collaboration. “Helping people to collaborate is a wonderful thing. Giving them the time to think is even better,” he concluded.

Gerald Loeb Awards 2017