Sub-theme 12: Flashpoints, crossroads, and fateful choices: Towards an event-based view of strategizing

Joseph Lampel, Cass Business School, City University London, UK
Jamal Shamsie, Eli Broad School of Management, Michigan State University, USA
William Starbuck, Lundquist College of Business, University of Oregon, USA

Call for Papers

Experienced decision makers are aware that while they work to create consistent and stable strategies, events may challenge and empower their organizations to break with the past. Events, both expected and unexpected, can reinvigorate or undermine organizations. Events shape what organizations learn from experience, and how they approach future actions. They may become focal points for strategic sense making, but also stimulate action. Events can therefore generate opportunities, raise threats, impact managerial thinking, engender strong emotions, and change the landscapes in which organizations operate.

Strategizing for events and strategizing stimulated by events are processes that trigger, manage, and respond to events. This strategizing can be emergent or deliberate. It can be triggered by an organization’s actions or by events in the wider environment. It may involve organizational members at every level, or may be exclusively dealt with by top management. Furthermore, event-based strategizing may evolve to enrich decision making capabilities, or it may remain relatively stable.

Our current understanding of event-based strategizing has benefited from research that focuses on distinctive categories of strategic events such as mergers, acquisitions, market entry, CEO succession, and crisis management, to mention but a few. However, moving beyond specific findings to a general understanding of event-based strategizing calls for integration of insights from these and other related research topics.

This sub-theme brings together researchers who are interested in working towards a wider understanding of event-based strategizing within organizations, industries, and economies. In addition to scholars who work in organisational and management research, we also welcome scholars who work in public policy, decision theory, technological innovation, social change, community dynamics, and economic development.

We invite papers in the following areas:

  • Alternative definitions of event-based strategizing

  • The dynamics of event-based strategizing in different types of organizations

  • Event-based strategizing by organizations that are seeking to reshape their environments

  • Event-based strategizing when organizations respond and adapt to their environments

  • Event-based strategizing at the organizational population level

  • Relationships between strategizing triggered by events and routine strategic processes that shape ongoing organizational activities (strategy as practice)

  • Learning processes that shape event-based strategizing

  • Methodologies for studying event-based strategizing

Joseph Lampel 
Jamal Shamsie 
William Starbuck