Insegnamento a.a. 2023-2024


Department of Management and Technology

Course taught in English

Student consultation hours
Class timetable
Exam timetable
Go to class group/s: 11 - 12
CLEACC (7 credits - I sem. - OB  |  SECS-P/07)
Course Director:

Classes: 11 (I sem.) - 12 (I sem.)

Synchronous Blended: Lezioni erogate in modalità sincrona in aula (max 1 ora per credito online sincrona)

Suggested background knowledge

This is an introductory course to business and corporate strategy, therefore there is no formal prerequisite. Students should be familiar with the fundamentals of management and microeconomics.

Mission & Content Summary


In this course, we will explore the decisions that executives in the creative industries have to make in order to carve competitive positioning and ensure long-term sustainability for their companies. The schedule is organized into four modules (see CONTENT SUMMARY), with the goal to help students develop an analytic toolkit for understanding strategic issues and hone their ability to structure complex business problems and make decisions in lack of complete information. The course is primarily designed for students who wish to pursue a career in creative industries or who are planning to work in or create companies that advise or support these fields. The ultimate objective of the course is to provide students with a coherent theoretical framework useful to the stimulation and development of their strategic decision-making in different situations.


The course covers analytical and conceptual models that help in the development of strategic thinking.


Specifically, in the first module of the course, we will focus on the formulation of competitive strategy for a given business of a firm (how  to play in relation to the external and internal environments and the changes both constantly undergo); in the second module, we will develop an understanding on how multi-business firms determine the scope of their activities (where  to play in terms of product/customer segments, geographies and value chains); in the third module, we will focus on operations management and its strategic centrality to cope with constant changes in customer preferences, networks of supply and demand, and developments in technology; in the last module, we will analyze strategic decisions that are specific of and key to current competitive landscapes in the creative fields.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILO)


At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Identify, understand, and describe the competitive environment within diverse creative industries
  • Evaluate the structural determinants of industry profitability and their dynamics
  • Explain processes for transforming competitive advantages into sustainable competitive advantages
  • Explore strategic decisions for growth and sustainability of organizations in the cultural fields
  • Determine the optimal scope of a firm
  • Describe and use foundational concepts in strategy such as industry dynamics, competitive advantage, resources and capabilities, organizational structure and how they relate to creative industries
  • Describe and use foundational concepts in operations such as planning and control, supply chain management and corporate social responsibility
  • Understand and assess current strategic trends in product portfolios, corporate scope and asset management within the industries of entertainment


At the end of the course student will be able to...

In brackets the way in which abilities will be developed and tested


  • Apply the main concepts of business strategy to real life cases and strategic decisions (case discussions and group work activities)
  • Describe the status of attractiveness of an industry and analyse a firm’s strategy in the context of the competitive forces and the dynamics of its industry (case discussions and group work activities)
  • Identify the sources of a firm’s competitive advantage and assess its sustainability along time (case discussions and group work activities)
  • Identify and evaluate a firm’s growth options (business simulation and negotiation)
  • Develop problem setting, select information and formulate hypotheses (case discussions and group work activities)
  • Analytical elaboration in complex settings (business simulation and negotiation)
  • Work in team and deliver oral presentations (group work and activities)
  • Build constructive and active participation, synthesis skills, peer-reviewing (class participation, case discussions and group work activities).

Teaching methods

  • Face-to-face lectures
  • Case studies /Incidents (traditional, online)
  • Individual assignments
  • Group assignments
  • Interactive class activities on campus/online (role playing, business game, simulation, online forum, instant polls)


Frontal lectures will be coupled with intense class participation, discussion and debates, in-class exercises, and impromptu Q&A.

This will allow students to better work through difficult concepts and theories and develop their skills in tackling real issues and situations by applying theoretical constructs.


  • Cases are discussed in class with the purpose of bringing to life the concepts and frameworks learned during the course.
  • Individual assignments are used to develop critical thinking and analytical skills through the use of course concepts.
  • Group assignments and business simulations develop critical communication skills required to address strategic decision-making in organizational contexts.

Assessment methods

  Continuous assessment Partial exams General exam
  • Written individual exam (traditional/online)
  • Individual assignment (report, exercise, presentation, project work etc.)
  • Group assignment (report, exercise, presentation, project work etc.)
  • Active class participation (virtual, attendance)
  • Peer evaluation


Attending students are those who are present on campus for at least 75% of classes and actively participate to class activity. Attendance will be recorded at the beginning of the lecture during the first 10 minutes. Roll call may be carried out during class. 


Be aware:

Signing in for a friend who is not in class or signing in while not being physically in class is considered not complying with the University Honor Code and, as ruled by the University, implies not being able to take part to 6 months of exam sessions.


Active participation is encouraged and rewarded. It will be faculty responsibility to make sure that each attending student is given enough opportunities to speak out.


Attending students prepare all required tests (as detailed below). The status of attending students is valid until the February 2024 session of exams. Students not completing all requirements will automatically become non-attending students.



  • Through real-world case analyses, students learn to analyze and understand complex environmental and organizational phenomena related to business strategy. These case studies give the students the ability to examine and evaluate how business strategies affect, and are affected by, an organization’s environment. Specifically, in-class group activities are run on a regular basis.
  • Through two team-based business simulations, students actively use the concepts and frameworks learned in class to craft the operations and corporate strategy of either a new entrepreneurial venture and an existing one. Students gain the ability to organize and manage a project within a team, the ability to develop an effective business strategy mindset (e.g., analysis of the market, understanding of requisite resources and capabilities, necessary organizational structure, etc.), and the ability to structure and deliver a winning presentation.
  • ​​​​​​A final exam composed of approximately 30 multiple-choice, true-false, and open-ended questions, will test general understanding of course concepts and frameworks. 


Non-attending students are either students who directly opt for the final written exam only or students who do not complete ALL requirements needed to be considered attending or students who take the final exam after February 2024 exam session.


Non-attending students are required to take a final written exam only.


The test will be composed of approximately 30 multiple-choice, true-false, and open-ended questions, and will verify the understanding of course concepts and frameworks and the thorough study of book materials. 

Teaching materials


Course material will be made available via:


  • Course reserve (CR);
  • Lecturers’ slides and other relevant material will be uploaded on Bocconi e-learning platform, Blackboard (B).
  • N. SLACK, A. BRANDON-JONES, R. JOHNSTON, Operations Management. Prentice Hall, 8th edition (selected chapters, though not mandatory).


Attending students

Attending will be tested on the provided slides and materials available via Blackboard, the Case Studies discussed in class, and the bibliography listed in the detailed course schedule available via Course Reserve.


Non-attending students are required to prepare the final exam on the following books:


  • R.GRANT, Contemporary Strategy Analysis, Wiley, 2022, 11th Edition (chapters 1-5; 7-10; 12-13).


  • N. SLACK, A. BRANDON-JONES, R. JOHNSTON, Operations Management. Prentice Hall, 8th edition (chapters 1-3; 5; 12; 17).
Last change 18/05/2023 16:34