Advertisement

Rethinking Business Strategy with Complexity Theory

  • Wai Ming Mak

Abstract

Business strategy is regarded as the capstone subject in management education. The subject has developed since the early sixties in the time of a comparatively stable business environment. However, as time goes by, it has found that the strategy concepts cannot explain new phenomena facing business managers recently. As we enter the knowledge age, the subject requires some new ideas to enrich its sustainability. After the incoming-tide of the game theory in the nineties, it is time to rethink business strategy and its application from the perspective of complexity theory in the new millennium.

Keywords

Strategic Management Complexity Theory Business Strategy Fitness Landscape Harvard Business Review 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Andrews, K. (1971).The Concepts of Corporate Strategy, Irwin, Homewood, IL.Google Scholar
  2. Ansoff, H.I. (1965).Corporate Strategy, McGraw-Hill, New York.Google Scholar
  3. Arthur, W.B. (1996). “Increasing Returns and the New World of Business,”Harvard Business Review, 74(4): 100–109.MathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  4. Arthur, W.B. (1999). “The End of Economic Certainty,” in TheBiology of Business: Decoding the Natural Laws of Enterprise, (J.H. Clippinger III, ed.), Jossey-Bass, San Francisco.Google Scholar
  5. Beinhocker, E.D. (1997). “Strategy at the Edge of Chaos”The McKinsey Quarterly, (l):24–39.Google Scholar
  6. Beinhocker, E.D. (1999)“Robust Adaptive Strategies”Sloan Management Review, 40(3):95–106.Google Scholar
  7. Berreby, D. (1998). “Complexity Theory: Fact Free Science or Business Tool?”Strategy and Business, (l):40–50.Google Scholar
  8. Black, M. (1962). Models and Metaphors: Studies inLanguage in Philosophy, Cornell University Press, Ithica.Google Scholar
  9. Brandenburger, A.M., and Nalebuff, B.J. (1995)“The Right Game: Use Game Theory to Shape Strategy”Harvard Business Review, 73(4):57–7l.Google Scholar
  10. Brown, S.L., and Eisenhardt, K.M. (1998).Competing on the Edge: Strategy as Structured Chaos, Harvard Business School Press, Boston, MA.Google Scholar
  11. Chandler, A.D. (1962).Strategy and Structure: Chapters in the History of the Industrial Enterprises, MIT Press, Cambridge.Google Scholar
  12. Coveney, P., and Highfield, R. (1985).Frontiers of Complexity: The Search for Order in a Chaotic World, Faber and Faber, London.Google Scholar
  13. Fairtlough, G. (1995). “Biological Models and Business Success”Business Strategy Review, 6(3):27–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Flood, R.L. (1987). “Complexity: A Definition by Construction of a Conceptual Framework”Systems Research, 4(3):177–185.zbMATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Gell-Mann, M. (1994).The Quark and the Jaguar: Adventures in the Simple and the Complex, Freeman & Co., New York.zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  16. Gleick, J. (1987). Chaos: Making a New Science, Viking, New York.Google Scholar
  17. Hamel, G., and Prahalad, C.K. (1989)“Strategic Intent”Harvard Business Review, 67(3):63–76.Google Scholar
  18. Henderson, B.D. (1989)“The Origin of Strategy”,Harvard Business Review, 67(6): 139–143.Google Scholar
  19. Holland, J.H. (1995).Hidden Order: How Adaptation Builds Complexity, Perseus Books, Cambridge, MA.Google Scholar
  20. Kauffman, S.A. (1993).The Origins of Order: Self-Organisation and Selection in Evolution, Oxford University Press, New York.Google Scholar
  21. Kauffman, S.A. (1995).At Home in the Universe: The Search for Laws of Self Organisation and Complexity, Oxford University Press, New York.Google Scholar
  22. Learned, E.P., Christensen, R.C., Andrews, K., and Guth, W. (1965).Business Policy: Text and Cases, Irwin, Homewood, IL.Google Scholar
  23. Lissack, M.R. (1997). “Of Chaos and Complexity: Managerial Insights from a New Science,”Management Decision, 35(3):205–218.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. McMaster, M.D. (1996).The Intelligence Advantage: Organising for Complexity, Butterworth- Heinemann, Oxford.Google Scholar
  25. McMillan, J. (1992).Games, Strategies, and Managers: How Managers Can Use Game Theory to Make Better Business Decisions, Oxford University Press, New York.Google Scholar
  26. Mintzberg, H., and Waters, J.A. (1985). “Of Strategies, Deliberate and Emergent,”Strategic Management Journal, 6(3):257–272.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Murray, P.J. (1997).Study Guide on Complexity Theory and Strategic Management, The University of Hull.Google Scholar
  28. Pippenger, N. (1978). “Complexity Theory,”Scientific America, June: 114–125.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Porter, M.E. (1980).Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analysing Industries and Competitors, Free Press, New York.Google Scholar
  30. Porter, M.E. (1985).Competitive Advantage: Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance, Free Press, New York.Google Scholar
  31. Porter, M.E. (1991).Competitive Advantage of Nations, Free Press, New York.Google Scholar
  32. Porter, M.E. (1996). “What is Strategy?”Harvard Business Review, 74(6):6l–78.Google Scholar
  33. Rumelt, R.P., Schendel, D.E., and Teece, D.J. (1994)“Fundamental Issues in Strategy” inFundamental Issues in Strategy: A Research Agenda, (Rumelt, R.P., Schendel, D.E., and Teece, D.J., eds.), Harvard Business School Press, Boston, MA.Google Scholar
  34. Schoemaker, P.J.H. (1990). “Strategy, Complexity and Economic Rent”Management Science, 36(10):l 178–1192.Google Scholar
  35. Sherman, H., and Schultz, R. (1998).Open Boundaries: Creating Business Innovation through Complexity, Perseus Books, Reading, MA.Google Scholar
  36. Sloan, A.P. (1963).My Years with General Motors, Sedgewick and Jackson, London.Google Scholar
  37. Stacey, R.D. (1996).Strategic Management and Organisational Dynamics, Second Edition, Pitman Publishing, London.Google Scholar
  38. Waldrop, M.M. (1992).Complexity: The New Science at the Edge of Order and Chaos, Viking, London.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wai Ming Mak
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ManagementThe Hong Kong Polytechnic UniversityHung Hom, KowloonHong Kong

Personalised recommendations