Session 150

Dynamic Capabilities in Strategy Processes

Track H

Date: Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Time: 11:30 – 12:45


Room: Meeting Room 3

Session Chair:
Philip H.B. More, University of Southern California

Title: Building Dynamic Capabilities in an Uncertain World


  • Philip H.B. More, University of Southern California
  • Ann Majchrzak, University of Southern California

Abstract: We examine how new dynamic capabilities are built by organizations with emergent groups under time pressure in a world of uncertainty. Emergent groups not only cross-boundaries of education, experience, and organizations but are also groups of individuals who have not worked together before and come together quickly. These groups develop new organizational capabilities by building on their differences while minimizing the negative consequences of unfamiliarity, different priorities, and time. We studied ten emergent groups in-depth over time and inductively identified 12 practices associated with managing the three tensions inherent in using emergent groups for building capabilities. We used qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) to identify configurations of these practices that were both necessary and sufficient for managing each tension for creating new capabilities.

Title: Can Dynamic Capabilities Explain Idiosyncrasies in New Product Development Processes? Comparative Case Insights From the Semiconductor and Aerospace Industries


  • Ina Horn, University of Wuppertal
  • Michael Horn, Harvard University

Abstract: We analyze the predevelopment and prototyping stages of the new product development process with a focus on the underlying dynamic capabilities, how such routines evolve on different organizational levels, and what the associated social phenomena are. Comparative case study evidence from the aerospace and semiconductor industries suggests that higher order resource reconfiguration and integration routines are established idiosyncratically. Based on 42 face-to-face interviews we argue that simple, perception-based and loosely-coupled routines seem to be more effective for reconfiguring responsibilities and task sequences. On the other hand, detailed, codified and rigid higher-order routines were found more effective for integrating outsourced services and new technology. Our data shows that within the same industry setting relatively simple and perception-based routines coexist with detailed and codified higher-order routines on different organizational levels.

Title: Developing and Exercising Dynamic Political Capabilities: The Case of European Airlines


  • Thomas Lawton, Open University
  • Tazeeb Rajwani, University of Essex

Abstract: Governments and their agents can both facilitate and constrain organizational wealth creation. The emergence of firm-level political strategy is a frequent response to protect or promote organizational interests. When effectively configured and implemented, these political strategies can become capabilities. This study examines the development and application of political capabilities in European national airline carriers within a context requiring proactive political strategy, i.e. market deregulation. Our findings show how senior management teams develop divergent political capabilities in this context. We argue that while senior management’s attention to specific political processes can create valuable political capabilities, this value creation is moderated by the nature of ownership and the public and private stakeholders that dominate governance.

Title: Drivers and Practices of Authonomous Engagement with Organizational Capabilities


  • Krsto Pandza, University of Leeds

Abstract: In this paper I am broadly motivated by unveiling drivers and practices of autonomous action that influence the creation of new and refinement and acceleration of existing organizational capabilities. I report findings of an inductive study conducted in three firms in which identifiable autonomous groups transparently engaged with the pattern of capability development. The empirical observations clearly suggest that intra-firm heterogeneity of strategic intents, perceptions on opportunities and strategic values of capabilities, as well as heterogeneity of collective experiences and competencies, provide necessary conditions for understanding the source of autonomous actions. The autonomous groups engage with the evolutionary patterns of capability development by deploying creative and agent-based practices of search, integration, recombination, legitimization and framing of alignment.

All Sessions in Track H...

Sun: 13:00 – 14:30
Session 259: The State of Strategic Process Research: Critical Observations and Suggestions for the Future
Sun: 15:00 – 16:30
Session 263: Interactive Strategy Process Work-in-Progress Workshop
Sun: 16:30 – 17:30
Session 312: Strategy Process, IG Meeting
Mon: 12:45 – 14:00
Session 155: Language, Emotion and Learning in Strategy Processes
Mon: 15:45 – 17:00
Session 149: Resource Allocation and Portfolio Management
Mon: 17:15 – 18:30
Session 153: Decision Making in Strategy Processes
Tue: 10:00 – 11:15
Session 156: Realizing Strategies Through Effective Processes
Tue: 11:30 – 12:45
Session 150: Dynamic Capabilities in Strategy Processes
Tue: 14:30 – 15:45
Session 152: Innovation and Learning in Strategy Processes
Wed: 10:00 – 11:15
Session 154: Key Actors in Strategy Processes
Wed: 11:30 – 12:45
Session 151: Cognitive Approaches to Strategy Processes

Strategic Management Society

Washington DC