Sagarain-Learning from#725ELearning from the Octopus is all about what we can learn from nature about how to adapt to the complex, risk-filled, and unpredictable world we live in.  Biological organisms have been surviving–and thriving–on a dangerous planet for billions of years, and they have a lot to teach us.  In this book I tell their stories, as well as stories of their human counterparts–a blind paleontologist, a former James Bond, and a radical innovator disguised as an upstanding Marine captain–to open our eyes to how much more adaptable we could become. With a Foreword by Senator Gary Hart.

“This book is a provocation and a delight.” – Eric Liu, author of The Gardens of Democracy

Rafe Sagarin is one of the world’s leading lateral thinkers” – John Arquilla, Professor, Naval Postgraduate School


ObsEcolFinalCoverObservation and Ecologywritten with Anibal Pauchard, is about is about the remarkable changes going on in science right now–a transformation that is taking us back to the old, deeply observational ways of understanding complexity, with the aid of incredible new technologies and much greater respect for all kinds of observers of the world.  The wisdom of fishermen, the stunning and troubling views of Earth provided by satellite, and amazing new discoveries of life are all parts of an exciting, holistic view of complex systems that is emerging in the life sciences.  With a Foreword by Paul Dayton and contributions from well-known and emerging scientific leaders.

“They take on a number of sacred cows, and gore them, so this will be a thought- provoking and much-discussed book” – Ecology

“…it was a pleasure to read about science in a style that is both informative and inspiring.” – Biological Conservation

“An engaging manifesto for a renaissance of field research in ecology.” – Basic and Applied Ecology 


NaturalSecurityNatural Security, co-edited with Terry Taylor, is a collection of brilliant essays from members of my original Darwinian Security working group on what we can learn from nature about security in society.  Included are essays by Scott Atran on breaking through sacred values conflicts, by Geerat Vermeij on what the history of life tells us about adaptable organizations, by Richard Sosis on common evolutionary features of all religions and many more.  If you’ve ever wondered what happens when you put a former spy, a blind paleontologist, a virologist from East LA, and a scientist obsessed with marmots in a room together Natural Security tells all.

“A fascinating read, and an essential and novel perspective on international security.” – Simon Levin, Princeton University

“Senior policymakers should heed the perspectives offered by the authors of this invaluable book–if they are ignored the world will be a more perilous place.” – Senator Sam Nunn