Surviving and Prospering in Challenging Business Environments: Combining Roadmapping and Scenario Analysis

Research output: ThesisPhD Thesis - Research UT, graduation UT

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This dissertation provides important insights into the question of how firms can surmount various critical challenges that compromise their ability to survive and prosper in both the short term and the long term. In particular, this study has strengthened understanding of how roadmapping and scenario analysis may be combined and applied so that the sustained success of firms in volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous business environments has enhanced feasibility.

The dissertation verifies that scenario analysis is an appropriate tool for broadening the attention of decision makers to issues in their environment and to strategic options they would otherwise never detect. In this regard, the tool facilitates the identification of highly novel, explorative strategic options that are key to future success in challenging economic environments: scenario analysis breaks through the bias of decision makers that favors options that optimize current business activities. Indeed, the dissertation shows that selecting individuals with a specific set of cognitive capabilities to generate strategic options following scenario analysis greatly increases the odds of obtaining highly novel strategic options – and also highly valuable and exploitative strategic options.

Still, the dissertation recommends firms use both scenario analysis and conventional SWOT analysis in order to benefit from their specific characteristics and effects. Afterwards, firms need to devise a coherent course of action that seeks to create value for the long term as well as the short term. In other words, firms need to compile a specific combination of strategic options that promises great value. This dissertation explains that a roadmap is a valuable strategy tool to support firms in this process; it details a firm’s transformation over time, ensuring that the attention of decision makers is focused on alignment and coherence across various critical elements of a strategy as well as to its implementation. Essentially, the dissertation argues for the adoption of a real-options approach in which both robust and flexible elements are incorporated into the roadmap. This approach delivers an effective combination of roadmapping and scenario analysis.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • University of Twente
  • Halman, Johannes I.M., Supervisor
  • Hofman, Erwin, Co-Supervisor
Award date2 Jul 2021
Place of PublicationEnschede
Print ISBNs978-90-365-4981-3
Publication statusPublished - 2021


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