This course explores different approaches to strategic cognition. Where do good strategic ideas come from? How can we cultivate innovative strategic thinking, in different ways and through different approaches? What is the role of analytical approaches to strategy? What is the role of strategic intuition and creativity? How can you increase your capacity as a strategic leader and a strategic thinker? Students will engage in a deep reading of theoretical and other conceptual material, in addition to the use of some cases. We will spend the course focusing on different ways to think about strategy, and what insights these might provide to you as a strategist and business leader. Specifically, we will focus on strategy as a science, on strategy as an art, and on analogical thinking in strategy—highlighting the differences between these approaches, their strengths and weaknesses, and the role of different approaches to cognition in strategic thinking. Throughout the course, we will tie our discussions to some contemporary issues in strategic management and business leadership and illustrate the concepts discussed through the use of relevant case examples.


Academic Course Objectives


·         Expose students to several different approaches to strategic cognition—both in theory and practice

·         Approach ideas about strategic thinking in greater depth and rigor than in a traditional course with only cases

·         Critically recognize the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches to strategic thinking

·         Sharpen students’ strategic thinking abilities, instincts, and judgment as potential executives and decision makers


Elements of the Course Grade


Class contribution                                            35%

Final paper                                                       35%

Individual papers/discussion leadership                       30%