Whether you are a future manager, policy maker, diplomat, lawyer or employee of an international organization, understanding the interactions of firms with their broader business environment is an essential skill that will be invaluable for your professional career. In today’s dynamic business environment, firms are increasingly engaging with a variety of stakeholders in order to be successful. In this new case-based, block seminar, we will learn how firms can pursue an integrated approach to strategic management that combines elements from non-market strategy (e.g. how to successfully engage with non-market actors such as regulators or the media) with concepts from traditional market strategy (e.g. how to deal with market forces such as competitors).
• Patricia Klopf, WU Vienna, Austria
• Alison E. Holm, CBS Copenhagen, Denmark
Corporate Partners involved:
• Andrea Rukschio-Wilhelm – European Parliament, Information Office, Vienna
• Gilbert Rukschcio – Pantarhai Advisors
• Vladyslav Makarenko – Boehringer Ingelheim
• David Morris – United Nations ESCAP
We will examine a variety of questions at the intersection of strategy and international political economy. For example, how can companies gain a competitive advantage by successfully shaping their broader business environment, how do managers play political influence games with stakeholders from multiple countries and how can firms form alliances with different interest groups? We will cover a variety of topics such as analyzing a firm’s business environment, stakeholder engagement, lobbying, climate change, political influence games, sustainable development and strategy, ethical dimensions of business, analyzing different market and non-market environments, strategy and energy policy and firms’ interactions with political actors.
Students may miss up to 20% of in-class time.
The theoretical and applied concepts taught in the course will be conveyed through the discussion of business cases and supplemental reading materials. Case studies will include, among others, the experience of AES in Georgia, MTV’s efforts to tackle HIV/Aids, the political economy of climate change and carbon trading, lobbying efforts by the Dow Chemical Company in the European Union, Mercedes-Benz’s PR problems with the Mercedes A-class in Germany, Grupo Bimbo’s non-market challenges in the U.S., Newmont Gold in Fujimori’s Peru, the WTO dispute between Bombardier and Embraer, corporate political strategy by Canadian mining company Bre-X, Metro’s regulatory challenges and the engagement of Chilean energy company Colbun with stakeholders. At the end of the course, students will have a thorough understanding of strategy and political economy in a global setting and will have obtained the necessary tools to craft successful, integrated firm strategies in diverse institutional and political environments.
The course method blends lectures, discussions, and presentations. Specifically,
• Substantial classroom discussion is encouraged and expected
• All students are required to work on group assignments during the seminar
• The readings (cases and articles) will be made available to the students ahead of time, and need to be prepared before the actual start of the seminar
The final grade will be based on
- participation and active involvement in class (i.e. 40% weight; individual), as well as
- a group presentation (50% weight; group), and
- a commentary (i.e. each presenting group has to submit a 2-pager in Word, where it comments on another group’s presentation; 10% weight; group).