This advanced strategy seminar provides class participants with an integrative framework and specific analytical tools for understanding how firms interact in the marketplace: within an industry, across industries, and beyond national borders. The premise of the course holds that business competition is both dynamic and relative; it is a constant interplay between companies as they juggle market positions by exchanging moves and countermoves, and a firm initiating a competitive move (whether a new product introduction or expansion into a new market, an acquisition bid or a simple price cut) must be prepared to meet counteractions from rivals. Understanding the relative nature of this dynamic process is the key to building and sustaining competitive advantage.


The seminar is designed to develop an appreciation for cutting-edge academic research and its application to pertinent competitive issues, which is an essential skill for managers responsible for developing and implementing business strategies and for consultants advising such managers. Participants will be expected to abstract larger strategic issues from financial and operational particulars and to apply the concepts, analytical tools, and research methods learned in class to an intensive project on competition. The course will be especially useful to those interested in strategy consulting, marketing and strategic planning, and industry security analysis, as well as anyone seeking to develop sophisticated competitive thinking.


Academic course objectives:


·         To enhance participants’ competitive thinking and analytical skills in conducting industry and market analysis

·         To expose participants to established and emerging academic research and its direct business implications

·         To give participants the opportunity to produce applied research and case publications


Elements of the course grade:


Class contribution                                                       20%

Group (or individual) paper/project                            60%

Participant-led class discussion and written report     20%