Introduction to Strategy-as-Practice

Published on August 15, 2012 Reviewed on September 3, 2017   45 min

A selection of talks on Strategy

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Hello and welcome to this series on Strategy-as-Practice. In this first introductory seminar, I, Paula Jarzabkowski, Professor of Strategy at Aston University, and my colleague, David Seidl, who's a Professor of Strategy at the University of Zurich, will be giving you a brief overview of the broad field of strategy-as-practice.
In this overview, we'll first talk you through the foundations of strategy-as-practice, and then David will explain three different concepts of practice that you might apply in doing strategy-as-practice research. I'll then look at a research framework that you could use for strategy-as-practice, and David will then finish by looking at some of the theoretical resources which, of course, we'll pick up on in future lectures in the series, some methodological challenges which will also be dealt with in more detail in another lecture in this series, and we'll conclude with some resources that might help you in your reading about strategy-as-practice.
The foundations of strategy-as-practice are often cited in many of the articles that you can read as moving us from a focus on strategy as something that a firm has. A firm has a strategy to excel in something that a firm and the people within it do. As a result, it's a very people-centric view on strategy trying to understand how what people do in the name of strategy shapes the strategies that firms themselves might take. The reason that this approach arose is because there are two main points of departure. One is some disenchantment with mainstream strategy and a desire to build on the process turn, and secondly, a contribution that is grounded in the broader practice turn in the management disciplines. I will now deal with these two points of departure.