Live Q&A with Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, Author of 'Rest', 'Shorter' & 'The Distraction Addiction'


In this Q&A, Lesley Pinder chats to Alex Soojung‑Kim Pang about working less, while increasing productivity.

In Alex’s own words:

“I study people, technology, and the worlds they make. My latest book, SHORTER: WORK BETTER, SMARTER, AND LESS– HERE’S HOW (Public Affairs 2020), explains how companies have moved to 4-day weeks without reducing profits, sacrificing productivity– or cutting salaries.

It’s a sequel to my last book, REST: WHY YOU GET MORE DONE WHEN YOU WORK LESS (Basic Books 2016), which explores the role that deliberate rest plays in the lives of creative and productive people. The latest paperback edition features a foreword by Arianna Huffington.

REST builds on ideas I started exploring in THE DISTRACTION ADDICTION (Little, Brown & Co. 2013), which explained how we can use information technologies to stay focused and be more creative, rather than distracted and fractured.

Together, these books have been translated into more than a dozen languages.

I founded Strategy + Rest to help organizations that want to implement 4-day weeks and deliberate rest in their own workplaces. Previously I worked in as a technology forecaster and futurist in Silicon Valley think-tanks. I’m also a visiting scholar at Stanford University.

I studied history and sociology of science at the University of Pennsylvania, and have held fellowships at Williams College, University of California-Berkeley, and Microsoft Research Cambridge. My first book, EMPIRE AND THE SUN: VICTORIAN SOLAR ECLIPSE EXPEDITIONS (Stanford University Press, 2002), is about, well, Victorian solar eclipse expeditions.”


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