Three Cities

Three Cities

Seeking Hope in the Anthropocene

‘With economies stagnating, politics polarising, societies shattering and ecosystems suffering, I felt an urgent need to go walkabout last September.’

Orthodox is obsolete; conventional is kaput. We thought we knew how we make economics, politics and technology work for us. But increasingly, they are failing to run by the rules and systems we’ve honed over recent decades. Boom–bust economies, fractured and destructive politics, and a deeply degraded ecosystem are just some of the symptoms.

In this BWB Text acclaimed business journalist Rod Oram travels to Beijing, London and Chicago to explore these symptoms and to seek answers – and hope. Because if ten billion people are going to live well on this planet in 2050, we have to fundamentally change the way we do things.

What are BWB Texts?

BWB Texts are short books on big subjects by great New Zealand writers. Spanning contemporary issues, history and memoir, new BWB Texts are released regularly, and the series now amounts to well over fifty works.

All recently published BWB Texts can be purchased in print and digital formats using the ‘Buy’ or ‘Preorder’ buttons on this page. You can also subscribe to the series – a great gift idea! Find more information about subscription offers here.

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Print publication:
Ebook publication: Aug 2016
Pages: 128
RRP: $14.99
ISBN: 9780994135407
ISTC: A022016000000159
DOI: 10.7810/9780994135407

Search inside


Rescue Missions, Rod Oram, Scoop Review of Books, 28 October 2016

Listen to Rod Oram's interview on RDU, Up Again with James Dann, RDU 98.5 FM, 21 September 2016

Listen to Rod Oram on Nine to Noon, Radio New Zealand, 13 September 2016

Listen to James Dann's review of Three Cities, Up Again with James Dann, RDU 98.5 FM, 7 September 2016

'Rod Oram: Oscillating between hope and despair', Nick Grant, National Business Review, 29 August 2016

'Book Extract: Three Cities: Seeking Hope in the Anthropocene', Rod Oram, National Business Review, 27 August 2016

'Rod Oram: Earth's hopeful future', Rod Oram, Sunday Star Times, 21 August 2016

Read an excerpt from Rod Oram's Three Cities, Pure Advantage, 16 August 2016


'His journey is rich and fascinating, and the book is as close as you can get to packing yourself in Rod’s suitcase and going travelling with him. Everywhere he went he asked how will we support a population of 9-10 billion people without stuffing the environment? Much like Rod himself, I finished the journey with a pretty grim view of the task ahead, tinged with rays of hope.' 'The Societies of Tomorrow', Geoff Simmons, The Morgan Foundation Blog, 5 September 2016