Credits: 6

Schedule: 10.09.2019 - 17.10.2019

Teacher in charge (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

Henrikki Tikkanen

Contact information for the course (applies in this implementation): 

Professor Henrikki Tikkanen: 

Course coordinator: 

Teaching Period (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

I 2018–19 (autumn) Töölö campus
I 2019–20 (autumn) Otaniemi campus


Learning Outcomes (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

Upon completion of the course, students will:

  • Understand the role of historical knowledge in the evolution of industries and companies
  • Understand how central concepts in strategy and marketing (e.g. dynamic capabilities, market orientation) have evolved and how they have been adopted and applied in real-life company settings
  • Understand how the historical method can be applied to the study of diverse topics in management research
  • Be able to write and present a concise academic seminar paper on a chosen historical topic.

Content (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

Research in strategic management on the one hand and strategic marketing on the other have traditionally tended to go separate paths. Strategic management research has focused on topics such as dynamic firm-internal capabilities, competitive actions and dynamics, upper echelons of corporations, strategic leadership, and strategy practices and processes. The customer and market viewpoint has often been missing. Strategic marketing research has studied corporate orientations and their performance implications, customer value and customer relationships, marketing performance measurement, and value networks. Therein, the top management and leadership viewpoint has been scarce.
This course offers a business history perspective to strategic management and marketing. It has often been claimed that a lot of management research is void of relevant historical understanding, which may lead practicing managers to repeat past mistakes (e.g. in the case of business cycles). Extant historical studies on the above-mentioned diverse topics on strategy and marketing published in the leading journals of these fields are included in the readings package of the course. What is more, the students prepare and present an academic seminar paper on a chosen historical topic. This not only offers insights into historical past-dependencies in strategy-making and marketing activities in different industry and company settings, but also sheds light on how the historical research method can be successfully applied to provide answers to relevant research questions.

Assessment Methods and Criteria (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

  • Readings assignment (20 % of the grade, individual grading)
  • Class participation and discussion (10 % of the grade, individual grading)
  • Seminar paper (50 % of the grade, group grading)
  • Learning diary (20 % of the grade, individual grading)

Workload (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

6 cr, 160h

  • Lectures & interactive seminars, 21 h
  • Preparation of a seminar paper in groups of 1-3 people, 40 h
  • 1-2 three-hour presentation sessions for the seminar papers, 6 h
  • Individual work with the preparation of literature summaries and the final report, 93 h

Study Material (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

ca. 25 academic journal articles representing historical research in the areas of strategy and marketing.

Course Homepage (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020):

Grading Scale (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 


Registration for Courses (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

Registration via WedOodi. Check registration time in WebOodi.

NOTE: Mention your group of priority upon registration.

Further Information (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

The number of participants is limited to 60. Priority is given to (1) Aalto students studying in MSc Program of Marketing, (2) Aalto students studying in MSc Program of Global Management with focus area in Marketing, (3) CEMS-studens, (4) Aalto students studying a MSc Minor in Strategic Marketing and (5) Aalto students studying a MSc Minor in Marketing. Priority is also given to students who haven’t completed the course (or registered for the course) before.

NOTE: Students are required to write own group of priority to further information field of course registration!


Registration and further information