New Competence Center at the Institute of Management & Strategy – Alliances and Ecosystems

The Institute of Management & Strategy forms a Competence Center on “Ecosystem Management”. In today’s economy, many companies engage in ecosystems to jointly realize new and shared value propositions. In particular, ecosystems comprise a set of multiple actors with varying degrees of complementarities without full hierarchical control. Think of Apple’s iOS app store, in which third-party app developers need to work individually on Apple specs. In doing so, they depend on Apple’s success to succeed themselves, but Apple has no unilateral control to set prices and quantities, even if it retains significant control on who can participate in its ecosystem. This contrasts sharply with Apple’s hardware production, where it is in charge of a tightly managed supply chain.

Unequivocally, this new world of ecosystems challenges existing considerations on competitive, collaborative, and organizational strategy profoundly – moving our focus from firm-centric strategy to interconnected activities that realize joint value propositions. Incumbent firms are nervous about this development, as they fear that they will not be able to receive their slice of the new profit pools. Even more, they are afraid that technology firms in conjunction with complementary partners will destroy their existing business models.

The Institute of Management & Strategy aims to enable businesses to recognize and grasp the opportunities in this new world of ecosystems. Led by Prof. Christoph Lechner, the institute initiates a Competence Center to promote the exchange of academia and the corporate world on cutting-edge insights and best practices in strategic ecosystems management. As little is known about this exciting new avenue, we study central questions such as: How do ecosystems emergence, develop and fail? Which roles employ the different players within an ecosystem? Why and when should a firm engage in an ecosystem? Why and when should it exit the ecosystems? Which resources should a company invest in an ecosystem? Which innovative types of activity systems will arise?

For further details about the new competence center, please klick here. When you are interested in our current research projects, please contact Maximilian Jakob Dexheimer, M.A. HSG and PhD Candidate at the new competence center.

Prof. Dr. Christoph Lechner, Head of the new Competence Center „Alliances & Ecosystems“