Richard Whittington, Julia Hautz and David Seidl are editors of a Special Issue in Long Range Planning on “Open Strategy – Transparency and Inclusion in Strategy Processes“:
Over the last few years there has been an apparent trend towards greater openness in the strategy process, for which Chesbrough & Appleyard (2007) and Doz & Kosonen (2008) coined the term “open strategy”. This new development parallels earlier ones in the area of innovation resulting in radically more open approaches to managing innovation processes (Chesbrough, 2006). Openness in strategy processes comes in many different forms such as strategy jamming, i.e. the inclusion of larger numbers of internal employees beyond the TMT by means of various social media technologies; inter-organizational strategizing, i.e. the organization of strategy workshops between different organizations for the collaborative exploration of strategic opportunities and threats; more transparent external communication of strategy, such as through analyst and media strategy presentations and more detailed strategy reporting; or collective, participatory strategy processes of community-based or network-based organizations, making use of crowdsourcing technologies. Clearly these new developments are partly made possible by the availability of new social technologies (Haefliger et al. 2011; Stieger et al. 2012), but they are also reinforced by new organizational forms and changing managerial cultures (Whittington et al 2011).
Whittington et al (2011) summarize the trend to greater strategy openness by distinguishing two dimensions: (1) greater internal and external transparency with regards to processes and outcomes; (2) greater inclusiveness of various actors in strategy-making, internal and external. Greater openness on these dimensions is clearly opposed to conventional notions of strategy which treat it as exclusive and secretive rather than inclusive and transparent. Hence openness, which extends across the private and public sector, constitutes a significant challenge to the way strategy is traditionally understood and practiced. With this special issue we want to bring together papers that explore the drivers, forms and implications of this new development in strategic management.
We call for papers that deal with the various aspects and dynamics of open strategy – particularly where it goes beyond traditional notions of open innovation. We are interested in conceptual and empirical studies from a variety of different theoretical perspectives, such as network theory, resource-based theory, resource dependency theory, institutional theory, micro-political approaches and theories of social practice. We encourage equally quantitative and qualitative studies, and are open to work from profit and not-for-profit sectors. To aid in the development of papers, an associated workshop will be held on 30th June and 1st July 2014 at the Saïd Business School, University of Oxford. Papers may be submitted directly to the Special Issue without attendance at the workshop.
Deadline for submission of papers to the Special Issue: October 31st, 2014. Deadline for submission of abstracts to associated Workshop: April 14th, 2014