I’m really interested in what I call “second derivative studies”, i.e. work that tries to make other work improve faster. Some examples: progress studies, economic development.
In both, people are trying to understand what level of improvement is possible. These are really interesting areas of study because, if any level of improvement is possible, then you can pay almost any amount of money to realize it.
A particular fascination is Silicon Valley. Why did SV grow into the economic engine of the United States? Some books that have helped me understand this:
- The Power Law.
More broadly, what has made America such an innovative country? Some books:
- The Idea Factory.