Creating and changing strategy in organizations – how is it possible?

ISE researcher Jørgen Ravn Elkjær received a Recognition Award for Best Papers in the category “Enterprise” at this year’s International Conference on Knowledge, Innovation & Enterprise in London this September. The award was given out for a paper called ‘Entrepreneurial barriers to strategy’.

KIE Konference 2014
Photo: KIE Conference 2014.

The paper takes up a discussion about possibilities of creating and changing strategy in organizations, and one point from the paper is how important it is in organizations that want to continue developing strategic management, to leave room for the entrepreneur to play:

In this regard, it is important to consider, as the paper introduction says, that “the relationship between the concepts of change, strategy and entrepreneurship is crucial, since assuming a lack of change, combined with homogeneous elements in the production function, leaves no role for the entrepreneur to play“.

And old discussion much alive today
Point of departure in the award-winning paper is a 50 year old discussion that started when Russian-Americanapplied mathematicianand business manager Igor Ansoff published his book “Corporate Strategy”, posing two alternating hypothesis about the possibilities of creating and changing the strategy in a hierarchy to encompass external changes.

 Today, researchers still don’t agree on this. The two alternating hypothesis concerning the question still looks roughly the same, tells Jørgen Ravn Elkjær: “Hypothesis 1: development is a consequence of a change in strategies in hierarchies due to adaptation; and Hypothesis 2: development is a consequence of the survival of hierarchies with suitable existing strategies“.

Path dependence in management?
Limiting factors to strategic management is often education and experience of the entrepreneur and hierarchies that maintain the strategies formed at the foundation, tells the paper. Combined this seems to lead to a sort of lack of freedom that determine certain strategies. To this challenge to innovative strategic management, organizational learning is – at least – part of the answer, says Jørgen Ravn Elkjær in the paper.

Until the book with the papers from the KIE Conference is published, a pdf copy is available from the author at

To see the full article, go to this pdf: Short Research Papers on knowledge, Innovation and Enterprise, then scroll to page 126.

Click here to read about the International Conference on Knowledge, Innovation & Enterprise 2014 in Riga.