October 17, 2014
The very first international workshop on the study of extreme settings, hosted by the Strategy as Practice Study Group (GéPS), was held on October 15 and 16. The event was co-directed by Full Professors Linda Rouleau and Ann Langley, of the Department of Management.
The international workshop was organized jointly with the Triple ED (Extreme Environments and Everyday Decisions) research group, the Umeå School of Business and Economics, in Sweden, CEROS (Centre d’études et de recherches sur les organisations et la stratégie), at Université Paris Ouest – Nanterre La Défense, in France, and the Canada Research Chair in Strategic Management in Pluralistic Settings at HEC Montréal, and brought together some forty researchers.
They explored different aspects of strategy as practice so as to better understand management in extreme settings, from theoretical and methodological viewpoints.
The researchers shared their findings from field studies in “extreme” settings as varied as refugee camps in the South Sudan, Mount Everest and Andean expeditions, the Arab Spring revolutions, deep-sea oil drilling rigs, and shootings in American schools, among others.
The participants were guided in their discussions by many questions, in particular: “how is it possible to organize ourselves and implement an action strategy in highly unstable or emergency settings, or even in dangerous situations?” and “how can we study management in these settings?”
World-renowned researcher and Oxford University Professor Richard Whittington, one of the founders of the strategy as practice approach, also gave a talk entitled “A Larger View on SAP: How to Change Big S Strategy,” to an audience of 75 people.