Dynamic Modeling of Business Strategies

  • Phil Gorman
  • Teresa Nelson
  • Bruce Hannon
  • Howard Thomas


This paper models the flow of innovations in fundraising practices among institutions of higher education. The value of undertaking a consensus modeling process as a foundation for the building of analytical models is demonstrated. Five reasons why modeling can add to knowledge and understanding of complex systems are suggested, and « ten commandements » crucial to the process of dynamic modeling are outlined. The modeling of the flow of innovations in fundraising practices is described in some detail, and statistically-derived parameters are extracted and analyzed. The primary aim of the paper is to demonstrate how modeling can be employed as an invaluable process that can lead researchers to a deeper understanding of the behavior of a complex system.


Personal Income Harvard Business Review Capita Growth Stella Model Soft System Methodology 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Ackoff, Russell (1978), The Art of Problem Solving, New York and Chichester: Wiley.Google Scholar
  2. Allen, Peter (1994), “Chaos and Evolution in the Social Context”, Futures, vol. 26.Google Scholar
  3. Checkland, Peter and Jim Scholes (1990), Soft Systems Methodology in Action, Chichester and New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  4. Diehl, Ernst and John Sterman, (1995), “Effects of Feedback Complexity on Dynamic Decision Making”, Organization Behaviour and Human Decision Processes, vol. 62, pp 198–215.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. de Geus, Arie (1988), “Planning as Learning”, Harvard Business Review, March-April, pp 70–74.Google Scholar
  6. Duncan, Norman E. and Pierre Wack (1994), “Scenarios Designed to Improve Decision Making,” Planning Review, July/August, pp 18–25.Google Scholar
  7. Forrester, Jay (1976), Principles of Systems, Cambridge, Massachusetts: Wright-Allen Press.Google Scholar
  8. Legasto, Augusto, Jay Forrester and James Lyneis (Eds.) (1980), System Dynamics, Amsterdam and New York: Elsevier/North-Holland.Google Scholar
  9. Hall, Roger I. (1976), “A System Pathology of an Organization: The Rise and Fall of the old Saturday Evening Post,” Administrative Science Quarterly, vol. 21, pp 185–211.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Hamel, Gary and Aime Heene (1994), Competence-Based Competition, Chichester and New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  11. Hamel, Gary and C.K. Prahalad (1994), Competing for the Future, Boston: Harvard Business School Press.Google Scholar
  12. Hannon, Bruce and Matthias Ruth (1994), Dynamic Modeling, New York: Springer-Verlag.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Mahajan and Peterson (1987), Models for Innovation Diffusion, Beverly Hills, California: Sage.Google Scholar
  14. Mason, Richard O. and Ian Mitroff (1981), Challenging Strategic Planning Assumptions, New York and Chichester: Wiley.Google Scholar
  15. Mitroff, Ian I., (1988), Break-away Thinking: How to Challenge your Business Assumptions (and Why you Should), New York, Wiley.Google Scholar
  16. Mitroff, Ian I., Richard O. Mason and Christine Pearson, (1994), Framebreak: the Radical Redesign of American Business, San Francisco, Jossey Bass.Google Scholar
  17. Mitroff Ian I. and Harold Linstone, (1993), The Unbounded Mind: Breaking the Chains of Traditional Business Thinking, New York, Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  18. Morecroft, John D.W. (1984), “Strategy Support Models,” Strategic Management Journal, vol. 5, pp 215–229.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Morecroft, John D.W. and John D. Sterman (1994), Modeling for Learning Organizations, Portland, Oregon: Productivity Press.Google Scholar
  20. Nelson, Richard (1991), “Why Do Firms Differ, and How Does it Matter?” Strategic Management Journal, vol. 12 (Winter special issue), pp 61–74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Nelson, Richard and Sidney Winter (1982), An Evolutionary Theory of Economic Change, Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press.Google Scholar
  22. Nelson, Teresa (1996), “Who Innovates? The Characteristics of Changemakers in an Institutional Theory Context,” Working Paper, College of Commerce and Business Administration, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.Google Scholar
  23. Pedhazur, Elazar J. and Liora P. Schmelkin (1991), Measurement, Design, and Analysis: An Integrated Approach, Hillsdale, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum AssociatesGoogle Scholar
  24. Porter, Michael (1991), “Towards a Dynamic Theory of Strategy,” Strategic Management Journal, vol. 12 (Winter Special Issue), pp 95–117.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Prahalad, C.K. and Gary Hamel (1990), “The Core Competence of the Corporation,” Harvard Business Review, May-June: pp 79–91.Google Scholar
  26. Sanchez, Ron, Aime Heene and Howard Thomas (Eds.) (1996), Dynamics of Competence-Based Competition: Theory and Practice in the New Strategic Management, London: Pergamon Press.Google Scholar
  27. Senge, Peter (1990), The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization, New York: Doubleday.Google Scholar
  28. Schoemaker, Paul J.H. (1993), “Multiple Scenario Development: Its Conceptual and Behavioral Foundation,” Strategic Management Journal, vol. 14, pp 193–213.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Sudman, Seymour and Norman M. Bradburn (Eds.) (1982), Asking Questions, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Sudman, Seymour, Norman M. Bradbum and Norbert Schwarz (1996), Thinking About Answers: The Application of Cognitive Processes to Survey Methodology, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
  30. Thomas, Howard (1982), “Screening Policy Options: An Approach and a Case Study Example,” Strategic Management Journal, vol. 3, pp 227–244.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Thomas, Howard (1984), “Strategic Decision Analysis: Applied Decision Analysis and Its Role in the Strategic Management Process,” Strategic Management Journal, vol. 5, pp 139–156.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Thomas, Howard (1988), “Policy Dialogue in Strategic Planning: Talking Our Way Through Ambiguity and Change,” in Louis R. Pondy, Richard J. Boland and Howard Thomas (Eds.), Managing Ambiguity and Change, New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  33. Wack, Pierre (1985), “Scenarios: Shooting the Rapids,” Harvard Business Review, November-December, pp 139–150.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Phil Gorman
    • 1
  • Teresa Nelson
    • 1
  • Bruce Hannon
    • 2
  • Howard Thomas
    • 1
  1. 1.College of Commerce and Business AdministrationUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUSA
  2. 2.Department of Geography and National Center for Supercomputing ApplicationsUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUSA

Personalised recommendations