Perspectives on Strategic Management


Dr Joe Sanderson


The module has three main elements. First, the module introduces a theoretical framework for understanding how firms make sustainable profits or 'rents' and puts this in the context of the broader debate over different interpretations of the concept of business strategy. Second, the module covers the operational stages of developing and implementing a business strategy. Finally, a framework is set out for understanding how to critique ideas about business in terms of their epistemological foundations. This allows students to decide which management ideas are sound and which are 'fads'.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module students should be able to:

  • Critically evaluate the main theoretical perspectives on the concept of business strategy.
  • Understand the stages management must go through in order to develop and implement strategy.
  • Present a framework, based on an understanding of epistemology, for critiquing management practices in order to assess whether or not they are appropriate for a firm.
  • Operationalize the ideas in the module in a series of case exercises and group discussions.

Method of Assessment

  • 3-hour unseen examination (50%)
  • 3,000 word essay (45%)
  • Group case exercise (5%).

Reading list

  • Grant, R. Contemporary Strategic Analysis (Concepts, Techniques, Applications). 5th ed. 
  • Johnson, G & Scholes, K. Exploring Corporate Strategy - Texts and Cases. 6th ed.