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Book part
Publication date: 5 April 2012

Neil Fligstein and Doug McAdam

The discovery of meso-level social orders in organizational theory, political sociology, and social movement theory, what have subsequently been called sectors, policy…

Abstract

The discovery of meso-level social orders in organizational theory, political sociology, and social movement theory, what have subsequently been called sectors, policy domains, and most popularly, fields (or in organizational sociology, organizational fields), opens up a theoretical terrain that has not yet been fully explored (see Martin, 2003 for one view of fields). In this chapter, we propose that in fact all of these phenomena (and several others), fields, domains, policy domains, sectors, networks, and in game theory, the “game” bear a deep theoretical relationship to one another. They are all a way of characterizing how meso-level social orders, social spaces are constructed. We want to make a bold claim: the idea of fields is the central sociological construct for understanding all arenas of collective strategic action. The idea of fields is not just useful for understanding markets and political policy domains, but also social movements, and many other forms of organized social life. In essence, scholars working on their particular empirical corner of the world have inadvertently discovered something fundamental about social structure: that collective actors somehow manage to work to get “action” toward their socially and cultural constructed ends and in doing so, enlist the support of others in order to produce meso-level social orders.

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Rethinking Power in Organizations, Institutions, and Markets
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-665-2

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Book part
Publication date: 23 December 2005

J. Ignacio Canales and Joaquim Vilà

This paper examines the emergent and deliberate views in strategy making through, what we develop as, a sequence of thinking and acting. Combining the features of thinking…

Abstract

This paper examines the emergent and deliberate views in strategy making through, what we develop as, a sequence of thinking and acting. Combining the features of thinking and acting may enhance the organization's ability to achieve change, an ability that remains untapped unless it is accompanied by a change in mental models. Both action thinking emergent issues as well as thinking–acting deliberate issues may constitute triggering events, when contrasted with a previously agreed frame of reference. We develop a framework to show how thinking co-evolves with action in a succession of strategic activities, and within an agreed upon frame of reference. Our aim is to shed light on the circumstances under which deliberate or emergent modes take place throughout the strategy-making process. We claim that changes in strategic activities are determined by attention-triggering events, driven by both thinking and acting.

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Strategy Process
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-340-2

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Article
Publication date: 22 October 2010

Xinming Deng, Zhilong Tian, Shuai Fan and Muhammad Abrar

The purpose of this paper is to explore the prediction of competitive response based on the characteristics of market and non‐market actions comprehensively, and develop a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the prediction of competitive response based on the characteristics of market and non‐market actions comprehensively, and develop a four‐stage decision‐making model of firm's competitive action, which is significant for Chinese practicing managers when formulating and implementing the strategies, and further predicting competitors' strategic choices.

Design/methodology/approach

The research adopted the method of structured content analysis and carried out the survey in Chinese home appliance industry, mainly covering the largest firms, including TCL, Hisense, Changhong, Konka, Haier, and Skyworth. The method of multiple regression analysis was employed to test the hypotheses.

Findings

The results show that in order to comprehensively forecast competitor's responding behaviors, the firms could not only limit their perspective to market field but also pay attention to non‐market. Additionally, in the process of dynamic interaction, the attacking or responding action is not independent and it is related significantly to another three type decisions, which are market and non‐market, strategic and tactic, and collective and individual. Further, the study asserts that, in market field, tactic activity is more likely to trigger competitor's response than strategic one, while in non‐market, the situation is just the opposite. Meanwhile, the study figured out that individual market attack is easier to trigger individual market and non‐market response, as well as collective market response. While for non‐market action, whatever it is individual or collective, both would be easy to provoke competitor's collective response.

Originality/value

The research findings extend the existing competitive interaction theory to non‐market field. When forecasting competitor's choice of the competitive action, the firms could not only limit their perspective to market field but also pay attention to non‐market, attaching importance to certain situation of competitor's taking such non‐market action as corporate philanthropy, etc. to launch an attack or a response for gaining competitive advantage.

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Nankai Business Review International, vol. 1 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8749

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Book part
Publication date: 19 July 2005

Bert Flier, Frans A.J. van den Bosch, Henk W. Volberda and Charles Baden-Fuller

How do large well-established firms renew themselves in an increasing turbulent environment? Is there a generic pattern of change or is each change journey rather…

Abstract

How do large well-established firms renew themselves in an increasing turbulent environment? Is there a generic pattern of change or is each change journey rather idiosyncratic? We posed five questions about the nature of renewal patterns. First, how do firms combine external versus internal initiatives in a trajectory of strategic renewal? Second, how does the balance of competence building and competence leveraging evolve in a trajectory of strategic renewal? Third, what are the sequences of action in a strategic renewal process? Fourth, do firms differ regarding speed of their renewal processes? Finally, do different strategic renewal trajectories give rise to different or similar outcomes? Using a simple framework and new metrics we described and analyzed the strategic renewal journeys of the five largest financial service firms in the Netherlands during the period 1990–1997. We found equifinality in viable trajectories of strategic renewal. In four out of five firms, they result in similar outcomes due to mimetic behavior. Nonetheless, one firm showed deviant strategic behavior.

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Competence Perspectives on Resources, Stakeholders and Renewal
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-170-5

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Book part
Publication date: 28 March 2006

Per Andersson and Lars-Gunnar Mattsson

Management, over time, takes a series of specific strategic actions. As strategic actions we define actions aimed at influencing how the actor is related to other actors…

Abstract

Management, over time, takes a series of specific strategic actions. As strategic actions we define actions aimed at influencing how the actor is related to other actors. We propose that when a strategic action is committed affects the outcome of the action. An important reason for this is that strategic actions over time can be regarded as interdependent sequences of actions. Timing and sequences may be more or less – or is not at all – preplanned by an actor. In a network perspective a focal actor is dependent on other actors that commit strategic actions. This creates interdependencies that vary over time, which a focal actor influences in a proactive, interactive and/or reactive way. The timing of strategic actions is a general, quite complex and elusive phenomenon to be handled in practice and theory. Despite its importance, very little research has been published.

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Relationship Between Exporters and Their Foreign Sales and Marketing Intermediaries
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-397-6

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2014

Olawale Oladipo Adejuwon

In order to achieve a desirable level of market efficiency, regulators need to identify the strategic groups within an industry and understand the way the constituent…

Abstract

Purpose

In order to achieve a desirable level of market efficiency, regulators need to identify the strategic groups within an industry and understand the way the constituent groups relate to one another. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

In the current study, factors that may lead to strategic group formation were developed and used as clustering variables in a k-means cluster statistical analysis to categorize the firms into strategic groups. The factors used are entry costs, timing of entry, technology type and scope of operations. In addition, the number and type of competitive actions employed by the firms in the industry were identified by structured content analysis of a public source. The competitive actions were used to examine the dynamics of the resulting groups within the context of competitive behavior, resource and scope commitments and corporate social responsibility (CSR) actions. In addition, χ2 analysis was employed to ascertain the likelihood that actions of a firm will be responded to by firms from the same group or from outside the group.

Findings

License fees was found to be the most significant clustering variable. The study also showed that groups with significantly higher license fees carried out considerably more competitive actions, had higher resource and scope commitments and executed more CSR actions. In addition, the study revealed significantly more competition within strategic groups than between groups.

Research limitations/implications

The absence of financial records for firms in the sample necessitated the use of CSR activity as a measure of firm performance. Some empirical studies have shown strong links between CSR and firm performance.

Practical implications

The study revealed high mobility barriers which prevent ease of movement of firms in the industry from one strategic group to the other. Therefore regulators who wish to promote competition must do so by identifying the strategic groups with significant market power and permitting entry not by lowering entry barriers but by allowing the entry of firms with proven resources similar to the firms in those groups and to stipulate similar commitments in entry conditions. The results also offer management practitioners an insight into competitive behavior in the industry.

Originality/value

The study utilized a unique data set (competitive actions of firms in the Nigerian Telecommunications industry as reported in the media) in contributing to empirical studies on competitive dynamics and strategic group literature.

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African Journal of Economic and Management Studies, vol. 5 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-0705

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2007

Amanda Langley, Nada K. Kakabadse and Stephen Swailes

This paper aims to contribute to understanding of strategy development by reporting a detailed case study of one pharmaceutical company over an 11‐year period using a…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to contribute to understanding of strategy development by reporting a detailed case study of one pharmaceutical company over an 11‐year period using a framework for classifying strategic actions developed from a broader study of strategic behaviour in the industry.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper utilises a longitudinal text analysis using published documentary sources to explore the strategic actions and grand strategies realised by Bioglan during 1992‐2002.

Findings

The findings develop concepts from the economics, ecology and strategy literature in order to highlight that, rather than strategy research focusing on “with whom and how do firms compete?” the emphasis should be on “with whom and how do firms co‐evolve?”

Research limitations/implications

The paper only explored the realised strategies of one firm during an 11‐year period using only published documentary sources.

Originality/value

Previous research does not appear to have explored the evolution and co‐evolution of a firm's strategic actions prior to its death, a gap that this paper aims to help to fill.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 45 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article
Publication date: 7 November 2019

Cigdem Baskici and Yavuz Ercil

The purpose of this study is to propose a measuring system based on the information flow to carry out a more precise assessment of strategic plans.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to propose a measuring system based on the information flow to carry out a more precise assessment of strategic plans.

Design/methodology/approach

An action research method is used with system dynamics. The indicators obtained from the strategic plans were assessed through information records.

Findings

The output of this study is a dynamic model which is produced by the workflows and processes in which decision-makers can apply experiments. By this means, it can be used as a measuring system based on information flows produced within the organization.

Practical implications

The first practical implication is that it can be possible to measure how much of the current workflows matched the strategic goals. Second, it can be possible to measure how much the budget allocated to the strategic plans corresponds to the amount of the total works. Third, it gets ability to managers to provide the opportunity to carry out experiments through the designed model.

Originality/value

As it uses information flows as measuring variable, this study is one of the novel approaches in strategy measurement systems. It also promises high efficiency and effectiveness because the assessment of goals and actions in strategic plans are sources of information which shed a light on the future strategic options to the decision-makers of the organizations.

Details

VINE Journal of Information and Knowledge Management Systems, vol. 50 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-5891

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Article
Publication date: 28 August 2007

A. Langley, N. Kakabadse and S. Swailes

This paper aims to present an innovative methodological framework developed out of primary research that will lead to new understanding about patterns in the strategic

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present an innovative methodological framework developed out of primary research that will lead to new understanding about patterns in the strategic actions realised by firms within an industry. The framework is to be applied to increase understanding of how realised strategies evolved in the pharmaceutical industry and overcomes some of the limitations of other methods.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative approach was developed adapting techniques from text, thematic and content analysis to identify and categorise strategic actions realised by pharmaceutical firms (referred to as grand strategies). Strategic actions were not pre‐selected but allowed to emerge during the data collection process from public announcements by firms in the industry's main journal, Scrip. Building upon the work of Pearce and Robinson grand strategies can be understood as the packages of strategic actions that firms had planned and/or realised in order to achieve long‐term objectives.

Findings

A framework of realised strategic actions and grand strategies in the pharmaceutical industry was developed with 23 mutually exclusive categories. The paper shows how the framework can be used as an analytical tool to explore patterns in strategic action and grand strategy evolution, temporal patterns in strategy development and strategic action coevolution.

Research limitations/implications

A limitation of the categorisation is that it is based on material collected from two years of empirical data from Scrip in order to develop the methodological framework. The framework was applied to data collected over an 11 year period in order to explore how the strategic actions of individual firms had evolved and co‐evolved. Data sources were limited to published sources.

Originality/value

The qualitative approach presented here offers a level of depth that has not been achieved by methodological approaches previously used to explore and compare patterns in realised strategic actions by firms operating in the pharmaceutical industry. The innovative approach contributes to management research in two key ways: providing a methodological framework that overcomes the limitations of previous studies into strategy evolution; and providing a systematic approach to data collection and analysis that can contribute to theory building with regard to strategy evolution.

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Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management: An International Journal, vol. 2 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5648

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Article
Publication date: 17 August 2021

Diórgenes Falcão Mamédio, Miguel Pina e Cunha and Victor Meyer Jr

By exploring “what is strategic improvisation in organizations?” the authors respond to advances in strategic improvisation (SI) conceptualization with an emphasis on the…

Abstract

Purpose

By exploring “what is strategic improvisation in organizations?” the authors respond to advances in strategic improvisation (SI) conceptualization with an emphasis on the challenges of combining unplanned but deliberate responses to relentlessly changing environments, in which strategy becomes increasingly improvised.

Design/methodology/approach

An integrative review was conducted with the potential to develop new theoretical approaches to research problems. This literature review resulted in an introductory SI framework.

Findings

The authors propose a SI conceptual framework combining foundation, structuration and capillarization. While foundations comprise extemporaneity, novelty and intentionality, considered as triggers for the manifestation of SI, in this study structuration refers to the combination of a minimal structure and a reassessment process in response to unexpected situations. Capillarization means interaction patterns characterized as spontaneous, dynamic and collaborative. This framework leads to the definition of SI as an impromptu deliberate action stream, combining unplanned responses with intentional actions sustaining the convergence of strategy and operation, to integrate and reconfigure resources at the strategic level.

Practical implications

SI in practice considers reconfiguring the internal and external forces to deal with unexpected events and impromptu deliberate responses to face rapidly changing environments. This would enable practitioners and managers to prepare for eventualities that evolve dynamically and spontaneously, and unpredictable imminent global crises.

Originality/value

The authors conducted the first study mapping improvisation as a strategic organizational level phenomenon. SI is recognized as operating across levels, from the tactical and functional to the strategic.

Details

Cross Cultural & Strategic Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-5794

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