Denmark, Aarhus

Biology of Business

when 16 July 2014 - 29 July 2014
duration 2 weeks
credits 5 EC

Business theorists and practitioners are gradually moving away from a mechanistic paradigm, where complicated systems can be reduced to the collective function of independent components, to a biological paradigm that views business as a complex, emergent property of interdependent autonomous organism-like actors and ecologic‐like environments.

Course leader

Nathan Fisher, North Dakota State University

Target group

Master's students with a background within Finance, Business and Management

Course aim

The aim of this course is to provide an in-depth understanding of how key biological paradigms of (a) ecosystem thinking and (2) evolutionary thinking can be harnessed to improve business strategy. Biology metaphors are strewn throughout our business vernacular: “Our product has evolved”, “It’s in our company’s DNA”, “Come on, it’s just survival of the fittest”, “Their video is going viral”, “We’re part of a corporate ecosystem”, “That product is nearing the end of its lifecycle.” Of course, metaphors are only useful to the extent that they accurately map to reality. The biological paradigm views business as a complex, emergent property of interdependent, autonomous, organism-like actors within ecologic-like environments. By understanding the core essence of truth beneath these metaphors, business strategists can unlock insights not available to competitors locked in a mechanistic paradigm.

Fee info

EUR 0: Students on a bilateral exchange programme do not have to pay. Freemovers are obliged to pay participation fees while tuition fees only apply to freemovers from countries outside the EU/EEA/Switzerland.