The Organizational Development Muse

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Notes on a Resource: The Economist

Posted by Mark L. Vincent on Feb 28, 2014 10:08:33 AM

The Economist

Author/Title/Publisher: The Economist Newspaper Limitedeconomist

Subject area(s): Worlds News and Analysis, Economic Reporting

Type of resource: Newspaper magazine, also available online, apps, podcasts and e-reader formats

----Ratings (1-5)----

Thought leadership = 3.  While the editorials are thought-provoking and attempt to be even handed, the primary purpose of the Economist is news reporting with minimal spin, helping thought leaders make decisions more than telling them what to think.

Accessibility of the material = 5.  The Economist can even send you prompts or e-mails of news as they post it. You can set search criteria to receive a digest of news every morning in your e-mail.  The subscription is pricey enough to make one think through whether they are committed to be a regular reader. This will turn some away.

Mix of theory and practice = 3. The purpose of the Economist is neither, although it frequently reports on thinking and application. Its book reviews are particularly stellar.  Its companion publication Intelligent Life is geared more toward higher thinking.

Look and feel = 5. This is a newspaper printed as a magzine, so it is more fragile than some. Still, it is compact, easy to stick in the folder, briefcase or backpack. One can roll it up, fold it back on itself, and easily clip articles for later reading or retrieval. The birght red masthead is unmistakeable. Simply holding it makes one feel they are a sophisticated reader.

Engagement of the audience = 3. Once one becomes an avid reader of The Economist, it is hard to stop. Each compact edition is crammed with information. Pictures are minimal. One needs to spend time with each issue. There is more here than can be digested in a couple of sittings. The result is that when one is busy sections of the magazine go unread. The result is a set of committed readers who feel guilty that they aren't reading more. Somehow that sounds religious.

--mark l vincent


Topics: Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, organizational development resources, notes on a resource


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