Upshift: Turning Pressure into Performance and Crisis into Creativity (Hardcover)
With over two decades’ experience both observing and interpreting how people channel disaster into opportunity in the most extreme circumstances and environments on Earth, Ben Ramalingam has a unique vantage point from which to identify the key principles that can enable anyone to use stress as an opportunity for change.
In Upshift, Ramalingam distils this expertise into an insightful, powerful, and engaging book that will show you how to reframe your set responses to stress and pressure and instead use them to harness the potential they hold not just for improving your work, your relationships, and your mindset, but for transforming them.
Upshift takes readers on an epic journey from early humans’ survival of the Ice Age to present times in our inescapable, pernicious and ever-shifting digital landscape. You will hear remarkable stories from a vast range of upshifters—all of whom carved new routes around perceived barriers using their powers to upshift. Underlying stories of how city commuters navigate train cancellations to how astronauts deal with life-threatening incidents, is one key message: We all have the power to innovate, whether or not we identify ourselves as creative or extraordinary.
Maybe you’re the challenger, who thrives by constructively disrupting the status quo like Greta Thunberg. Or perhaps you find yourself constantly tweaking, prodding, breaking, rebuilding, and improving like crafters such as the team that revolutionized space travel called the NASA Pirates. Do you love introducing people whose combined efforts will lead to greater achievements? You might be a connector, like master networker Ariana Huffington.
In a runaway world that is an engine for perpetual crisis, Upshift is not only an essential toolkit for survival, it is a roadmap for positive, and potentially life-changing transformation and influence. You don’t have to shut down – you can upshift.
About the Author
Ben Ramalingam is a senior leader, innovator, and researcher specializing in international crisis management and development. He is the executive director of the United Kingdom Humanitarian Innovation Hub and has worked with and advised the United Nations, the World Bank, national and regional governments, nongovernmental organizations, and businesses. In 2020 he was named a Humanitarian Change Maker of the 2010s, as one of the ten people or organizations who had done most to improve international humanitarian work over the course of the decade. He is the author of Aid on the Edge of Chaos: Rethinking International Cooperation in a Complex World and Upshift: Turning Pressure into Performance and Crisis into Creativity.
"Ramalingam is encouraging throughout [Upshift], urging readers to reframe problems and believe in their own innate abilities to enact change. A reassuring guide to empowerment." - Kirkus
Praise for Ben Ramalingam
“Beautifully clear writing and stories.” —Thomas Homer-Dixon, author of The Upside of Down
“Marrying science, policy and practice with a deep moral conscience, [Ramalingam] points to a future that that we should all be working towards.” —Peter Doherty, Nobel Laureate, Medicine
“Takes the readers on an impressive interdisciplinary tour……sets a new milestone…” —The Guardian
"Ramalingam sets out a challenge… to rethink our basic assumptions and to think and act in ways that are more attuned to the real world in all its complexities." —Sir Richard Jolly, Assistant Secretary General, United Nations
“Thought-provoking…ignore to [your] own detriment…” —The Economist
“Ramalingam skillfully draws upon a diverse body of ideas and research to deliver a vital message." --Philip Ball, author of Critical Mass, Winner of the Aventis Royal Society Book of the Year
“Ground-breaking… important and relevant…” —Financial Times
“[Ramalingam] points the way to a common sense far more appropriate to the 21st century world.”—Sir Geoff Mulgan, Chief Executive of the National Endowment for Science Technology and the Arts
“Ramalingam pushes his reader to question traditional wisdoms, navigate different disciplines, and value [e]xperience… Much needed…” —Noreena Hertz, author of Eyes Wide Open: How to Make Smart Decisions in a Confusing World