Technology Strategy course is for students with interest in managing, analyzing, and developing technology-based firms. The aims of the course are three-fold: (1) to provide you with an understanding of the range, scope, and complexity of technology management in the context of corporate strategic decision-making; (2) to provide insights into key strategic drivers of value creation and appropriation of established and emerging firms competing through technological innovation; (3) to arm you with a set of actionable tools to facilitate the selection of an appropriate technology strategy in uncertain and dynamic technology market. The students will have an opportunity to learn how to identify technologies that are likely to succeed in a market, and which firms are likely to profit from technology innovation. We will use a combination of theory and real- world examples through case studies, simulations, and readings. Note that no technical background is required for participating in this course, as we will focus on strategic and not on technical issues.
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David Collis and Michael Rukstad, 'Can you say what your strategy is ?' (HBS Reprint R0804E).
Fast Second: How Smart Companies Bypass Radical Innovation to Enter and Dominate New Markets, Markides and Geroski, 2004, Chapters 1 and 2.
Geoffrey Moore, Crossing the Chasm, 2014: Chapters 1.
Shilling, M., and Esmundo, M., Technology S-curves in renewable energy alternatives: Analysis and implications for industry and government, Energy Policy, 2009
Klepper, 1997. 'Industry Life Cycles,' Industrial & Corporate Change, 6 (1): 145-181.
Case: E-Ink in 2005 (HBS 9-705-506).
Carl Shapiro & Hal Varian, 'Networks and Positive Feedback,' Chapter 7 in Information Rules, Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Press, 1999. pp. 173-225. ISBN: 087584863X
O'Reilly III, Charles A., and Tushman, Michael L. (2004), 'The Ambidextrous Organization,'. Harvard Business Review, 82(4): 74-81.
Media: When Patents attack, Part I and Part II.
Case: Mobile Computing.
J. Gans and S. Stern, 2003. 'The product market and the market for 'ideas': commercialization strategies for technology entrepreneurs.' Research Policy 32: 333–350.
David J. Teece, 'Market Entry Strategies for Innovators: Avoiding Pyrrhic Victories,' Ch. 5 in Managing Intellectual Capital, New York: Oxford University Press, 2000. ISBN: 0198295421.
Case: HTC Corp in 2009 (HBS 9-709-466).
Christensen, C. and Bower, J.L., 1996. Customer Power, Strategic Investment, and the Failure of Leading Firms. Strategic Management Journal, 17 (3), pp. 197 – 218.
Eric von Hippel. 'Free Innovation.' MIT Press, 2016, chapter 1.
Chesbrough, H.W., 2003. 'The Era of Open Innovation.' Sloan Management Review, 44(3): 35-41.
The course follows a seminar format, with sessions being highly interactive, centering around discussions of the assigned cases and readings. The students will need to prepare for the classes by analyzing the case and readings, and when required, do an additional homework. We will also host up to two guest lectures, to reinforce the learning from practical experiences – the guests will be announced during the course.
1. Class participation (15%)
Active contribution is encouraged and expected, and it directly influences the learning outcomes. It is essential that all students study the assigned material, complete any other assignment before class, and participate in discussions during class offering original and thoughtful analysis supported by evidence and logic. Students may proactively participate in the discussion, or the lecturer may call upon any student to provide their interpretation. 10% of the total grade is self-evaluation of participation, and 5% is the peer-evaluation.
2. Online Exams in class (25%)
Students are required to take an online exam in class, every week, and the average of two best grades will be chosen to represent their grade. Some of the tests will be done in group, with maximum 4 people per group. In the 6th week, students will have a chance to repeat two tests of their choice, individually.
3. Exam (60%)
There will be a final examination (open book, open notes) covering the entire course. The grade in the exam must be higher or equal to 7,5/20 to pass the course.
The final grade is calculated according the following formula:
Final grade = 60% Final Exam + 25% In-class tests + 15% Class Participation
This course is comprised of three components:
Component 1: Introduction to Technology Strategy and Industry Dynamics.
The first component is the introductory part of the course. We will start by introducing the definitions of technology and technology strategy, and different types of innovations a technology may represent. We will relate technological innovations to corporate strategy, and study industry.
Dynamics – how firms competing through technological innovations are shaping and being shaped by the market.
Component 2: Creating and Capturing Value from Technology.In this component, we will study strategic challenges and opportunities that firms face in competing with their innovations. Students will learn how firms create and capture value, as we cover the concept of uniqueness and complementary assets, network externalities, open and closed standards, and how firms lock-in customers to their technology.
Component 3: Organizing for Technology Innovation in interdependent value chains.
We complete the course by expanding our analysis from firms to ecosystems. The goal of this component is to contextualize value creation and value capture in interdependent value chains of business ecosystems. Also, we will explore internal and external sources of knowledge and how technology changes the boundaries of firms, enabling inbound and outbound knowledge flows.
Programs where the course is taught: