MG472      Half Unit
Global Strategy, Management and Information Systems

This information is for the 2017/18 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Stephen Smithson NAB 3.31, Prof Leslie Willcocks NAB 3.23 and Dr Susan Scott NAB 3.12


This course is compulsory on the MSc in Management of Information Systems and Digital Innovation. This course is available on the Global MSc in Management, Global MSc in Management (CEMS MIM) and Global MSc in Management (MBA Exchange). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.


A basic understanding of business strategy and management and a basic knowledge of information and communication technologies. Students are expected to have a basic understanding of the challenges of implementing and managing information systems in organisations.

Course content

The aim of this core course is to address how organizations arrive at global strategy and its management and execution in a rapidly digitizing business world. Organizations operating globally, regionally and nationally are increasingly highly dependent on  information and communication technologies and digitial innovations for fulfilling their missions. This course provides global business management foundations and key insights into the emerging roles of ICTS and digital innovation in contemporary organizations operating internationally.

This course studies the varieties of management practices across regions, and how business management can be conducted internationally. Our teaching approach is, within dynamic global, regional and national contexts, to emphasise the interrelationship between international strategy, digitization and global operations.

Having identified distinctive global business management strategies, and market entry approaches, we explore how these are enabled through organizational structures, digitial innivations and strategies and information infrastructures, and implemented through marketing, human resource, R&D, and sourcing operational sub-strategies.

The course provides an examination of how emerging trends in strategy and operations are entangled with current processes of globalization and digitization and what these conditions of possibility mean going forward. The course focuses on: Perspectives on Globalization; Political Economic, Cultural and Legal Environments and Differences; Strategy in Global Context; Organizational Foundations; Global Information Systems and Digital Business Management, including strategic potential, infrastructure, architecture, cybersecurity and data privacy; Entry Strategy and Strategic Alliances; Global Sourcing and Logistics; International Management Challenges especially Projects, Technology, R and D and Innovation; Managing Across Boundaries; Corporate Social Responsibility and Business Ethics; and Regional Business Strategies and International Trade.

At the end of the course participants will be able to:

  1. Understand global, business and digital issues in strategy formulation
  2. Analyse business environments at competitive, country, regional and global/societal levels
  3. Understand  and analyse regional differences and how regional and international trade is conducted
  4. Use analytical frameworks for arriving at business and digital strategy
  5. Recognise and make recommendations on the strategic potential and impact of information systems and digital innovation in different organizational contexts.
  6. Decide how organizations can best enter and evolve in  new international markets.
  7. Analyse  international management issues in operational areas of human resources, marketing, logistics, sourcing,  R. and D., and project management 
  8. Apply ethical standards to issues of corporate social responsibility, sustainability, and digital security and privacy.
  9. Participate in managing culture, difference,  diversity, across borders.


15 hours of lectures and 13 hours and 30 minutes of seminars in the MT. 1 hour of lectures in the ST.

A reading week will take place in W6. There will be no teaching during this week.

Formative coursework

Classes are based around reading and discussing selected journal articles from the course reading list. Formative feedback is provided on class participation. A mock examination, with questions from MG472, MG481 and MG487 will be held.

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading:

  • Chaffey, D.  - Digital Business and E-Commmerce Management (Pearson: London)
  • Galliers, R. and Leidner, D. (eds.) (2009) Strategic Information Management. Routledge, London.
  • Ghemawat, P. (2007) Redefining Global Strategy. Harvard Business School Press, Boston.
  • Hill, C. (2011) International Business: Competing in The Global Marketplace. McGraw Hill, New York, 8th edition Chapters 1, 5, 6 ,9, 10, 11
  • Rugman, A. and Collinson, S. (2012) International Business. FT Prentice Hall, London. 6th edition. Note that each chapter has substantial bibliographies that can be referred to for sources.
  • Willcocks, L. (2014/16) Global Business Management Foundations. Brookes Publishing, Stratford, Second/Third edition (Kindle, White Plume publishing and Steve Brookes Publishing versions

Essential Readings to be done on a weekly basis to build up general knowledge:

  • The Economist – weekly news and regular relevant special studies.
  • The Financial Times – daily world commentary, regular regional/ theme special issues and archive.
  • The Wall Street Journal – detailed daily world commentary.

The main journals that the ‘keen and the curious’ may wish to search for additional articles on globalisation, business strategy, management and digital business are:

  • Academy of Management Executive
  • Academy of Management Review
  • Strategic Management Journal
  • Long Range Planning
  • Journal of Management Studies
  • Journal of International Business Studies
  • Journal of Management
  • Management Information Systems Quarterly
  • Executive
  • Journal of Strategic Information Systems
  • Organization Science
  • Management International Review
  • Harvard Business Review
  • Sloan Management Review
  • California Management Review


Exam (80%, duration: 2 hours) in the main exam period.
Coursework (20%) in the MT.

The individual course assessment will be made based on three pieces of individual course work:

  1. A presentation of  a key course reading. The student will be assessed on the presentation, the submitted Powerpoint slides and a two page summary of the presentation.
  2. A presentation of answers to a key class case study. The student will be assessed on the presentation, the submitted Powerpoint slides and a two page summary of the presentation.
  3. Class participation in class exercises, for example development of an Uberization case study, debates.

Key facts

Department: Management

Total students 2016/17: 94

Average class size 2016/17: 16

Controlled access 2016/17: No

Lecture capture used 2016/17: Yes (MT)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Commercial awareness

Course survey results

(2013/14 - 2015/16 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 93%



Reading list (Q2.1)


Materials (Q2.3)


Course satisfied (Q2.4)


Lectures (Q2.5)


Integration (Q2.6)


Contact (Q2.7)


Feedback (Q2.8)


Recommend (Q2.9)