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Richard Whittington

Professor of Strategic Management


Saïd Business School
University of Oxford
Park End Street
Oxford
OX1 1HP

Profile

Richard is a leader in the field of Strategy-as-Practice research, having published the first paper in the field (1996). 

The Strategy-as-Practice movement has revitalised research on strategy processes, with formally-recognised streams in such leading conferences as the Strategic Management Society, the Academy of Management, the European Group for Organizational Studies and the British Academy of Management.

Richard is author of eleven books, including two influential textbooks on strategy: Exploring Strategy, ranked by the Financial Times Teaching Power index as the top strategy textbook worldwide, and What is Strategy – and Does it Matter?, past winner of the Management Consulting Association prize for the best management book of the year He has published in leading journals such as the Administrative Science Quarterly, the Journal of Management Studies, Organization Science, Organization Studies, Research Policy and the Strategic Management Journal. His work has received more than 50,000 citations. His Google Scholar profile provides links to his papers.

Richard has served as an Associate Editor of the Strategic Management Journal, a Senior Editor of Organization Studies and a Deputy Editor of the British Journal of Management. He has served as a guest editor for eight journal special issues. He has also served on the Board of the Strategic Management Society and as Chair of the Strategy as Practice interest group at the Academy of Management. Richard is Millman Fellow in Management at New College, University of Oxford, where he has served as Sub-Warden.

Richard has held full or visiting appointments at Harvard Business School, HEC Paris, Imperial College, the University of Technology Sydney, the University of Toulouse and Warwick Business School. He has a PhD from Manchester Business School, University of Manchester, an MBA from Aston Business School and an MA in Modern History from Magdalen College, Oxford. He also has an honorary doctorate from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland.

Read Richard's CV.

Research

Richard’s research focuses on Strategy-as-Practice, in other words the work of strategy. Within this broad domain his current focus is exploring the recent ‘opening’ of strategy, as it becomes more transparent internally and externally, and involves a widening range of people from inside and outside the organisation. For example, he has found that companies are increasingly communicating about their strategy, with significant impacts upon share prices, both negative and positive. His work has implications for current public policy debates on short-termism in business, supporting the case for more long-term strategic communications to external audiences by senior executives.

Expertise

  • Strategy
  • Strategy formation
  • Strategy communications

Publications

  • Violetta Splitter,
  • David Seidl,
  • Richard Whittington
Research Office FTE Eligible Faculty
Strategy
  • Anna Plotnikova,
  • Krsto Pandza,
  • Richard Whittington
Research Office FTE Eligible Faculty
Strategy
  • Violetta Splitter,
  • Leonhard Dobusch,
  • Georg Krogh,
  • Richard Whittington,
  • Peter Walgenbach
Research Office FTE Eligible Faculty
Strategy
  • William Ocasio,
  • Basak Yakis-Douglas,
  • Dylan Boynton,
  • Tomi Laamanen,
  • Claus Rerup,
  • Eero Vaara,
  • Richard Whittington
Research Office FTE Eligible Faculty
Strategy
Organisation Studies
Innovation
  • Trudi Lang,
  • Richard Whittington
Research Office FTE Eligible Faculty
Strategy
Professional Service Firms
See more publications

Teaching

Richard teaches strategy and strategic management on MBA, EMBA and some executive education programmes.

His teaching is guided by two underlying themes. Firstly, strategy really matters - strategic choices have major impacts within the firm and outside, ones that both managers and citizens should truly understand. Second, strategy is increasingly becoming more ‘open’ - it is something that all levels within the firm and many stakeholders outside the firm need to be able to engage with. The ability, therefore, to enter and maintain good ‘strategic conversations’ is a vital skill in organisations today.

Accordingly, Richard aims for an interactive style in his teaching, where ideally the participants’ own organisations provide the ‘case’ materials and participants come away with new understandings that they can apply to their own work situation.

Oxford Answers

Thought-leadership and insights for business leaders written by our Faculty and Associate Fellows.

View articles by Richard.

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