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Robert Rubin with The Yellow Pad: Making Better Decisions in an Uncertain World

June 8

Robert Rubin served as the 70th United States Secretary of the Treasury from 1995 to 1999, after serving as the inaugural director of the White House National Economic Council from 1993-1995. He is currently chairman emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations, vice chairman of the board of trustees at the Mount Sinai Health System, and chairman of the board of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC). In 2006, he co-founded The Hamilton Project, an economic policy project at the Brookings Institution focused on growth that is broadly shared throughout our economy.

About The Yellow Pad

In 1958, as a college sophomore, Robert Rubin took a class that changed his life. The class was introduction to philosophy, and the professor, Raphael Demos, instilled in his students an idea that was simple yet profound: There is no such thing as certainty. For Rubin, this led to a critically important question: How can we make sound decisions in a fundamentally uncertain world?

While serving in some of the most significant roles in markets, business, and government, Rubin has grappled with that question. Time and again, when faced with a high-stakes decision, he turned to his most trusted tool: a simple yellow legal pad. Rubin’s yellow pad (or more recently, his iPad) became an expression of a larger decision-making philosophy that has both lasted and shaped a lifetime. In The Yellow Pad, Rubin lays out that philosophy with depth and detail, and presents a compelling intellectual framework for confronting some of the most difficult issues we face today.

The Yellow Pad contains a former Treasury secretary’s approach to economic policymaking. A former Goldman Sachs senior partner’s approach to personal investing and understanding risk. A former director of the National Economic Council’s approach to managing people in both private- and public-sector organizations. And much more. Yet despite his lifetime of experiences, Rubin remains refreshingly open-minded, interested in exploring ideas rather than promoting ideologies. With its combination of wisdom and relevance, The Yellow Pad is an essential guide for anyone looking to make better decisions in life, work, and public policy.


June 8
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