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2023/2024  KAN-CCMVI2136U  Corporate Strategy

English Title
Corporate Strategy

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration Summer
Start time of the course Summer
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Min. participants 30
Max. participants 60
Study board
Study Board for cand.merc. and GMA (CM)
Course coordinator
  • Diego Stea - Department of Strategy and Innovation (SI)
Main academic disciplines
  • Strategy
Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face teaching
Last updated on 18/04/2024

Relevant links

Learning objectives
The goal of this course is to develop a better understanding of the link between theory and practice within the content of the course. In the exam, students must demonstrate this ability through an in-depth case analysis. Specifically, the learning objectives are demonstrated in the exam to the degree to which students can perform along the following dimensions:
  • The thoroughness of the understanding of the relevant strategy theory.
  • The ability to choose and apply relevant theories to solve the case problem(s), establish link to the relevant academic literature, integrate case data and information with analysis frameworks and theory.
  • The quality of the case analysis in terms of relevance of aspects and issues discussed.
  • The consistency as well as stringency in reasoning.
  • The ability to reflect critically on own conclusions and recommendations.
Course prerequisites
Completed Bachelor degree or equivalent
Corporate Strategy:
Exam ECTS 7.5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 10 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Release of assignment Subject chosen by students themselves, see guidelines if any
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Summer
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
1st retake is a 72-hours home assignment, 10 pages, new exam question.
If the number of registered candidates for the make-up examination/re-take examination warrants that it may most appropriately be held as an oral examination, the programme office will inform the students that the make-up examination/re-take examination will be held as an oral examination instead.
Description of the exam procedure

Each student is required to write a 10 pages home assignmentThe assignment shall be based on a real-life firm case chosen by the student and should include the identification of a strategic challenge or opportunity, as well as an assessment of possible corporate strategic responses to those scenarios. The assignment must be infused with theoretical frameworks and perspectives discussed in class. The exam will be evaluated in accordance with the learning objectives of the course. In sum, each student is expected to:

  • Pick a real-life firm case suitable for strategy analysis.
  • Decide which of the course topics is most suitable for the case, and select a set of tools/theoretical frameworks related to that topic (three or four tools/frameworks).
  • Apply the selected tools/theoretical frameworks from the course in the context of the case situation.
  • Offer recommendations/assessments as result of the analysis.

An ideal structure for the assignment could be: a) case presentation and problem statement, b) short introduction to industry and context, c) description of tools/theoretical frameworks to be used, d) analysis of the strategic implications for the firm, e) conclusions and recommendations.

Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

This course takes a pragmatic approach towards the application of strategy in the corporate management context. The strategy topics of the course deal with the management of different businesses and product-market activities within the umbrella of the larger, typically multinational, enterprise. Hence, the course focuses on the effective management of business entities operating across different product-markets and thereby builds on the business strategy perspectives concerned with firm positioning in industry specific product-markets.

Effective corporate strategy relates to business expansion. One of the fundamental challenges is to lead and structure the firm so that its different parts provide a genuine contribution to global, corporate performance. Upon completion of this course the students should be equipped to address essential corporate strategy issues and analyze complex enterprises. As a result, students will be able to assess strategic risks and opportunities for the firm itself but also for its stakeholders, such as employees or investors, both nationally and internationally.

Description of the teaching methods
The course will emphasize open discussions and uses a mixture of theory and case studies to engage students in the classroom. In order to have an optimal mix between theory and practice 11 lectures of each 2 hours will be accompanied by 11 exercise sessions of each 1 hour. The exercises provide students with opportunities to develop new skillsets while working in small teams, such as contrasting opinions and developing joint solutions.
The lectures are to a large extent literature-based and might also incorporate short cases and accounts from practitioners to discuss some of the contemporary strategic challenges of corporate strategy. We intend to engage in a dialogue-based teaching approach. Thus, to gain the most benefit from class sessions students should be prepared to take active part in discussions and to prepare the readings thoroughly.
In line with our learning objectives, we boost the interactive and practice-oriented components of the course by incorporating exercises. The aim of the exercise sessions is to discuss applications of theoretical approaches and perspectives introduced in the lectures. Some suggested guidelines for preparation:
• Prepare the readings assigned for the lecture and exercise session.
• Identify important issues, concepts, and perspectives presented in the texts.
• Think about how theoretical approaches introduced and discussed in the readings may be applied in practical strategy considerations.
• Consider if there are inconsistencies and potential shortcomings associated with the presented analytical approaches.
Feedback during the teaching period
The design of the course follows a proactive feedback philosophy by ex-ante mirroring the exam. Students are repeatedly exposed to learning objectives, exam sub-tasks, and situations during selected exercises and lectures. In these preparation sessions, students are debriefed and can ask for detailed feedback on their own performance. Hence, they have opportunities for reinforced learning based on exam-relevant tasks and feedback all along the course, and well before they enter the actual exam. Parts of the final lecture are used to recap material, provide overarching feedback and invite detailed student questions.
Student workload
preparation 116 hours
teaching 30 hours
examination 60 hours
Further Information

3-weeks course that cannot be combined with any other course.


Preliminary Assignment: The course coordinator uploads Preliminary Assignment on Canvas at the end of May. It is expected that students participate as it will be included in the final exam, but the assignment is without independent assessment and grading.

Expected literature

The course is based on a combination of: textbook, scientific articles, case studies. The textbook is: Robert M. Grant. Contemporary Strategy Analysis, 11th Edition. All additional readings can be accessed via CBS Library.

Please note that there might be some changes in the final readings before the respective class sessions. These changes will be announced via Canvas, which will also be used to communicate other course-related information such as illness of teachers.

Last updated on 18/04/2024