BRIGHTON BUSINESS SCHOOL
MOULSECOOMB MODULAR SCHEME
The following syllabus covers the content of both semesters. A detailed course outline showing the
split between each separate module will be issued at the beginning of each year.
TITLE: STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT
CREDIT RATING: 20 SUBJECT AREA: Strategy
MODULE TYPE: Double SEMESTER OFFERED: 1&2
COURSE(S) FOR WHICH MODULE IS
ACCEPTABLE AND STATUS IN COURSE:
BA(Hons) Business Administration, Conversion - CORE
General pre-requisites are that students have successfully covered a broad range of business
subjects at level 2, or equivalent.
Specific pre-requisites are level 2 strategy (or a level 3 introductory strategy) module, plus experience
of writing business style reports and team work.
It is essential that students have a basic understanding of strategy that can be built on in this module.
The aim of the module is to provide in depth knowledge and understanding of competitive strategy
within a market environment. Strategy is presented as the need for change to ensure organisational
prosperity and including issues such as industry evolution, diversification acquisition and innovation as
well as revisiting basic business analysis.
To provide a level of knowledge and understanding equivalent to that provided by the triple modules
ST310/ST311, by building on pre-requisite studies.
On completion of this module the students should be able to:
• Explain strategic concepts, tools and theories over a wide range of business issues and
• Recognise how the business environment may affect a firm’s strategy and performance
• Demonstrate critical analysis and insight into the issues relating to developing and implementing
successful strategies in a rapidly changing world.
• Demonstrate an integrated understanding of the various business functions and disciplines they
have learnt about in previous years
• Demonstrate team work skills through preparing group projects
• Demonstrate their research skills in preparing group assignments
• Demonstrate communication skills through seminar discussions
Internal analysis and resource-based approaches to strategy:
Business functions and the value chain.
Financial analysis and strategy.
Corporate culture, power and strategy.
External analysis and market-based approaches to strategy:
Product life cycles.
Key success factors.
Strategic choices for single businesses: competitive strategies
Resource-based and market-based approaches compared.
The choice of means: in-house, buying-in and networking.
Managing strategic change.
Implementation of new strategies invariably require strategic change. Change can be structural,
system related or related to the culture of the organisation. Topics covered in this section will
therefore include the concepts and methods of change management, organisational
structure and design and a study of corporate culture, it's relevance, significance and
methods of change. Turnaround strategies can be included, as well as strategic control
Technology, Innovation and Knowledge Management
New product and process technologies innovation are enable companies to achieve competitive
The concepts of stakeholder relationships and management are used to enable issues such as
logistics and networking to be incorporated into strategic thinking
Ethics and strategic choice.
Ethical dilemmas in strategic choice, costs and benefits of ethical conduct and issues of
governance are considered.
Directions of growth.
Diversification has been one of the most popular answers management has found for the need
to grow. However, many companies have not experienced success with diversification. This
section covers the directions of growth such as focused and conglomerate diversification
and the underlying principles of managing growing organisations including synergy and
strategic architecture. For multi unit corporations, management of corporate relations
including 'parenting advantage' and strategic management styles also have great
significance. Globalisation will be touched on in the context of strategic stretch and the risks
associated with a heterogeneous environment versus the opportunities provided by increasing
convergence in the global market.
Methods of growth and restructuring
Growth frequently entails restructuring the corporation as a fundamental way of improving
performance and value addition. There are many methods for growth and restructuring and
companies usually use a combination of them. They include organic growth, mergers and
acquisitions, joint ventures and alliances and divestments. This section covers these
methods of growth and relates them to the methods of value addition at the corporate level
mentioned above, namely synergy, strategic architecture and business portfolio strategy.
The strategic decision process.
This section covers the strategic decision-making processes used by companies to develop
strategy (strategy content), taking into account relevant factors (strategy context). Strategic
planning is a major tool used by larger organisations for this purpose but many strategies are
also developed in the process of everyday activities, emergent strategies. Other concepts of
strategy, such as Institutional Theory and Managerial Cognition will be considered.
New developments, emerging issues and review
Students are recommended to read widely. The following general texts may be useful.
The latest editions of:
De Wit B & Meyer R, Strategy: process, content, context, West Publishing
Grant RM, Contemporary Strategy Analysis, Blackwell
Jenkins and Ambrosini Strategic Management: a multi-perspective approach, Palgrave
Johnson G & Scholes K, Exploring Corporate Strategy, Prentice Hall Europe
Mintzberg, Ahlstarnd and Lampel, Strategy Safari, Prentice Hall Europe
Thompson J, Strategic Management, International Thompson Press
There are also seminal books by authors with original ideas that will be useful and interesting for
students to read. Lecturers will mention some of these in class and among them are:
Porter M, Competitive Strategy, 1980
Porter M, Competitive Advantage, 1985
Hamel and Prahalad, Competing for the Future, 1994
Lecturers may refer students to other books and to articles in relevant periodicals.
Newspapers and Periodicals
Business Strategy Review
Harvard Business Review
Long Range Planning
Strategic Management Journal
Useful web sites
www.ft.com, Financial Times
www2.interscience.wiley.com/issn/0143-2095, Strategic Management Journal
www.elsevier.nl, Publishers of Long Range Planning
www.hbsp.harvard.edu/products/hbr/index.html, Harvard Business Review
Most textbooks also have web sites, usually mentioned in the preface or other introductory parts of
TEACHING & LEARNING STRATEGIES :
Lectures: 20 Open Learning: 0
Seminars: 20 Self Study: 100
Workshops: 0 Assessment: 60
Individual Assessment 70% (Either 3 hour exam (70%) or 2 hour exam (50%) plus
Group Assessment 30% Coursework
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE MODULE:
Strategy Management is a compulsory core subject because its strategic and holistic approach to
business requires students, from the very beginning of the year, to integrate, apply and reassess what
they learn in other more specialist modules.
Area Examination Board: Strategy External Examiner: N O’Regan
Faculty: MIS Site where delivered: Moulsecoomb
Module Writer(s): R Morland
Date of Approval: 2004 Date of Last Revision: 2004