Wisconsin School of Business

Hart Posen

Associate Professor - Management & Human Resources

Dr. Posen is an expert on strategy and innovation. His research and teaching is informed by a prior engagement as an entrepreneur in the technology and retail sectors. He is frequently invited to lecture on innovation strategy, strategy for competing under uncertainty, and global strategy, to audiences in North America, Europe, and Asia.

Dr. Posen holds a PhD in Strategy from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He is currently an Associate Professor of Management at the University of Wisconsin. He was previously on faculty at the University of Michigan, and has held affiliate appointments at Seoul National University (S. Korea), the Technion (Israel), and the University of Zurich (Switzerland).

In studying strategy, Dr. Posen's research focuses on the learning processes through which firms innovate, build capabilities, and sustain competitive advantage. His work recognizes that, in many industries, innovation is a principal vehicle of competition, and firms must survive under conditions of continuing change. In particular, he focuses on how firms can: (a) generate valuable knowledge that leads to innovative products, processes, and intellectual property, (b) leverage knowledge to drive competitive advantage, and (c) protect knowledge from rival imitation. He terms this set of activities the “knowledge generation-erosion cycle." Employing computational and empirical methods, Dr. Posen builds on theories of organizational learning to study technological change, innovation, R&D, knowledge diffusion, competition by entrants, and the enduring possibility that the innovator does not survive. He currently focuses on knowledge spillovers to rivals resulting from imitation and the consequences of different imitation strategies for firm performance.

Dr. Posen's research is regularly published in leading strategy journals. In addition, he holds influential editorial positions, as Associate Editor at Management Science, and on the Editorial Boards of: Administrative Science Quarterly, Organization Science, Strategic Management Journal, and Strategic Organization. His commentary on economic issues has appeared in a variety of media outlets including the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, New York Times, and BBC.
 

Selected Accepted Journal Articles


Aggarwal, V. & Posen, H. & Workiewicz, M. (2016). Adaptive Capacity to Technological Change: A Microfoundational Approach. Strategic Management Journal

Selected Published Journal Articles


Cao, Z. & Posen, H. (2015). Pre-Entry Experience, Post-Entry Organizational Learning, and New Entrants' Performance. Academy of Management Proceedings
Aggarwal, V. & Posen, H. & Workiewicz, M. (2015). The origin of capabilities? A microfoundational theory of firm heterogeneity. Academy of Management Proceedings
Posen, H. & Chen, J. (2013). An Advantage of Newness: Vicarious Learning Despite Limited Absorptive Capacity. Organization Science (24), 1701-1716.
Ethiraj, S. & Posen, H. (2013). Do Product Architectures Affect Innovation Productivity in Complex Product Ecosystems?. Advances in Strategic Management (30), 127-166.
Posen, H. & Martignoni, D. & Lang, M. (2013). Rubik's dilemma: Partial knowledge and the efficacy of learning. Academy of Management Proceedings
Posen, H. & Lee, J. & Yi, S. (2013). The Power of Imperfect Imitation. Strategic Management Journal (34), 149-164. doi: 10.1002/smj.2007.
Posen, H. & Levinthal, D. (2012). Chasing a Moving Target: Exploitation and Exploration in Dynamic Environments. Management Science (58), 587-601.
Knott, A. & Posen, H. (2009). Firm R&D Behavior and Evolving Technology in Established Industries. Organization Science (20), 352-367. doi: 10.1287/orsc.1070.0332.
Knott, A. & Posen, H. & Brian, W. (2009). Spillover Asymmetry and Why It Matters. Management Science (55), 373–388. doi: 10.1287/mnsc.1080.0950.
Levinthal, D. & Posen, H. (2007). Myopia of Selection: Does Organizational Adaptation Limit the Efficacy of Population Selection?. Administrative Science Quarterly (55), 586–620.
Knott, A. & Posen, H. (2005). Is Failure Good?. Strategic Management Journal (26), 617-641.
Knott, A. & Bryce, D. & Posen, H. (2003). On the Strategic Accumulation of Intangible Assets. Organization Science (14), 192-207. doi: 10.1287/orsc.14.2.192.14991.
Anne Marie, K. & David , B. & Posen, H. On the strategic accumulation of intangible assets (Reprint of 2003 paper). Competitive Strategy

Selected Submitted Journal Articles


Posen, H. & Yi, S. & Lee, J. (2016). The Efficacy of Imitation Strategies from a Topological Perspective. Management Science
Posen, H. & Keil, T. & Kim, S. & Meissner, F. (2016). Renewing research on problemistic search – a review and research agenda. Academy of Management Annals
Posen, H. & Leiblein, M. & Chen, J. (2016). A behavioral theory of real options. Strategic Management Journal

Working Papers


Cao, Z. & Posen, H. (2016). Examining new entrant performance: When does pre-entry industry experience harm post-entry performance?.
Posen, H. & Martignoni, D. & Levinthal, D. (2014). E Pluribus Unum: Organizational Size and the Efficacy of Learning.
Posen, H. & Lang, M. & Martignoni, D. (2014). Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning.
Posen, H. & Chen, J. (2014). The Peril of Plan B: Why Preparing for Change can be Risky.
Posen, H. & Martignoni, D. & Lang, M. (2014). Fortune favors fools: How confidence can compensate for competence in learning.

Presentations


INFORMS Annual Meeting ( 2016 ) The impact of learning and overconfidence on entrepreneurial entry and exit.

Seoul National University ( 2016 ) A behavioral theory of real options

Strategic Management Society ( 2016 ) How aspirations shape cognition

Yonsei University ( 2016 ) A behavioral theory of real options

Carnegie School of Organizational Learning - Asilomar Conference ( 2016 ) How aspirations shape cognition

DRUID, Copenhagen ( 2016 ) The impact of learning and overconfidence on entrepreneurial entry and exit.

University of Southern Denmark ( 2016 ) A behavioral theory of real options

Ohio State University ( 2016 ) Adaptive capacity to technological change: A microfoundational approach.

University of Texas-Dallas ( 2016 ) Adaptive capacity to technological change: A microfoundational approach.

Strategic Management Society, Denver ( 2015 ) Models and Evidence in Behavioral Strategy — Behavioral Real Options

Strategic Management Society, Denver ( 2015 ) The origin of capabilities? Performance and adaptability in the context of environmental change.

Academy of Management Conference, Vancouver ( 2015 ) New Directions of Behavioral Theory of the Firm Research — Problemistic Search

Vienna Conference on Strategy, Organizational Design, and Innovation ( 2015 ) Adaptive Capacity and the Dynamics of Operational Capabilities

Hebrew University ( 2015 ) A behavioral theory of real options

Tel Aviv University ( 2015 ) A behavioral theory of real options

LMU Munich, Germany ( 2014 ) The origin of capabilities? Performance and adaptability in the context of environmental change

Temple University ( 2014 ) A behavioral theory of real options

University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School ( 2014 ) A behavioral theory of real options

University of Lugano (USI), Switzerland ( 2014 ) A behavioral theory of real options

University of Wisconsin-Madison, MHR Brown Bag Seminar ( 2014 ) A behavioral theory of real options

Strategic Management Society, Madrid ( 2014 ) Two Faces of Experience in Organizational Learning: Aspiration Adaptation and Belief Adaptation

Academy of Management Conference, Philadelphia ( 2014 ) A behavioral theory of real options

Academy of Management Conference, Philadelphia ( 2014 ) Fortune favors fools: How confidence can compensate for competence in learning.

Academy of Management Conference, Philadelphia ( 2014 ) Fortune favors fools: How confidence can compensate for competence in learning.

Darden-Cambridge Judge Entrepreneurship and Innovation Conference ( 2014 ) Fortune favors fools: How confidence can compensate for competence in learning.

DRUID, Copenhagen ( 2014 ) Fortune favors fools: How confidence can compensate for competence in learning.

DRUID, Copenhagen ( 2014 ) How can imitation increase inter-firm heterogeneity?

Strategic Management Society, Copenhagen ( 2014 ) How can imitation increase inter-firm heterogeneity?

Ohio State University ( 2014 ) Fortune Favors Fools: How Confidence Can Compensate for Competence in Learning

University of Florida ( 2014 ) Fortune Favors Fools: How Confidence Can Compensate for Competence in Learning

National University of Singapore ( 2013 ) Fortune Favors Fools: How Confidence Can Compensate for Competence in Learning

Seoul National University ( 2013 ) Fortune Favors Fools: How Confidence Can Compensate for Competence in Learning

Singapore Management University ( 2013 ) Fortune Favors Fools: How Confidence Can Compensate for Competence in Learning

Yonsei University ( 2013 ) Fortune Favors Fools: How Confidence Can Compensate for Competence in Learning

Frankfurt School of Finance and Management ( 2013 ) Fortune Favors Fools: How Confidence Can Compensate for Competence in Learning

University of Lugano (USI) ( 2013 ) Fortune Favors Fools: How Confidence Can Compensate for Competence in Learning

Academy of Management ( 2013 ) Fortune Favors Fools: How Confidence Can Compensate for Competence in Learning

Academy of Management ( 2013 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

Atlanta Competitive Advantage Conference ( 2013 ) Rubik's dilemma: Partial knowledge and the efficacy of learning

TOM Symposium - New York University ( 2013 ) Second Order Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learing

University of Minnesota ( 2013 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

George Mason University ( 2013 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning.

Organization Science Winter Conference (Plenary Speaker) ( 2013 ) E Pluribus Unum: Organizational Size and the Efficacy of Learning

Bacconi University ( 2012 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

INSEAD ( 2012 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

University of Arizona — Eller College of Management ( 2012 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale De Lausanne (EPFL) ( 2012 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

Strategic Management Society ( 2012 ) Does size matter? Organizational size and the efficacy of experimental learning.

Strategic Management Society ( 2012 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) ( 2012 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

Freie Universität Berlin ( 2012 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

Universitat Pompeu Fabra — TOM Symposium ( 2012 ) Rubik's Dilemma: Partial Knowledge and the Efficacy of Learning

Atlanta Competitive Advantage Conference ( 2012 ) Does size matter? Organizational size and the efficacy of experimental learning.

University of Wisconsin School of Business ( 2012 ) An advantage of newness: Vicarious learning with limited absoptive capacity.

Georgetown University — McDonough School of Business ( 2012 ) An advantage of newness: Vicarious learning with limited absoptive capacity.

Seoul National University ( 2012 ) An advantage of newness: Vicarious learning with limited absoptive capacity.

Univerisity of Michigan — Psychology Dept. Decision Sciences Seminar ( 2012 ) Does size matter? Organizational size and the efficacy of experimental learning.

DRUID ( 2011 ) The power of imperfect imitation.

LMU — Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich ( 2011 ) Does size matter? Organizational size and the efficacy of experimental learning.

New York University, Stern School of Business ( 2011 ) The power of imperfect imitation.

Seoul National University ( 2011 ) The power of imperfect imitation.

University of Michigan — Strategy Brown Bag Seminar ( 2011 ) Does size matter? Organizational size and the efficacy of experimental learning.

University of Southern Denmark ( 2011 ) The power of imperfect imitation.

Academy of Management ( 2010 ) The power of imperfect imitation.

Atlanta Competitive Advantage Conference ( 2010 ) The power of imperfect imitation.

Midwest Strategy Meeting ( 2010 ) The power of imperfect imitation.

Organization Science Winter Conference ( 2010 ) The power of imperfect imitation.

Strategic Research Forum ( 2010 ) The power of imperfect imitation.

Academy of Management ( 2009 ) Is competition good? Competition, learning, and the performance of new entrants.

Duke University, Fuqua School of Business ( 2009 ) Chasing a moving target: Learning in dynamic environments.

Organization Science Winter Conference ( 2009 ) Bringing context to the exploration-exploitation trade-off: Considering the impact of selection and turbulent environments.

University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Business ( 2009 ) Chasing a moving target: Learning in dynamic environments.

Academy of Management ( 2008 ) Bringing context to the exploration-exploitation trade-off: Considering the impact of selection and turbulent environments.

University of Michigan — Hosmer Seminar Series ( 2008 ) Firm R&D behavior and evolving technology in established industries.

University of Western Ohio, Ivey School of Business ( 2008 ) Bringing context to the exploration-exploitation trade-off: Considering the impact of selection and turbulent environments.

Academy of Management ( 2007 ) Decomposing firm heterogeneity.

First Annual Internal Workshop on Entrepreneurship Research ( 2007 ) Is failure good?

INFORMS ( 2007 ) Dark side of balancing exploration and exploitation.

Organization Science Conference on Strategic Renewal ( 2007 ) Firm R&D behavior and evolving technology in established industries.

Strategic Management Society ( 2007 ) Decomposing firm heterogeneity.

Academy of Management ( 2006 ) Three essays on innovation and impact of capital.

INFORMS Annual Meeting ( 2006 ) Myopia of selection: Does organizational adaptation limit the efficacy of population selection?

Strategy Brown Bag Seminar ( 2006 ) Intermediate selection on a developmental journey.

Utah Winter Strategy Conference ( 2006 ) Intermediate selection on a developmental journey.

Dartmouth University, Tuck School of Business ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

Emory University, Goizueta Business School ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

Harvard Business School ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

INSEAD ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

London Business School ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

Rice University ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

Southern Methodist University ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

University of Michigan, Ross School of Business ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

University of North Carolina, Kenan-Flagler Business School ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

University of Washington ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

Washington University, Olin Business School ( 2005 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

Academy of Management ( 2004 ) Do financial markets price firm strategies?

Academy of Management ( 2004 ) Intermediate selection on a developmental journey.

Strategic Management Society ( 2004 ) Do financial markets price firm strategies?

Strategic Management Society ( 2004 ) Spillover symmetry and why it matters.

University of California, Anderson School of Management ( 2004 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

University of Ottawa ( 2004 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

University of Western Ontario, Ivey School of Business ( 2004 ) Do capital markets value firm capabilities?

Academy of Management ( 2003 ) From riches to rags: Munificence and new venture performance.

Academy of Management ( 2003 ) Is architectural change always disruptive to incumbent firms? Some counterfactual evidence.

Harvard Strategy Conference ( 2003 ) Is failure good?

Strategic Management Society ( 2003 ) From riches to rags: Munificence and new venture performance.

Strategic Management Society ( 2003 ) Is architectural change always disruptive to incumbent firms? Some counterfactual evidence.

Academy of Management ( 2002 ) The munificence penalty: How excess resources impact new venture performance.


Graduate Courses


Contributions to Strategy Research, PhD Seminar (University of Zurich, Switzerland)
Course DescriptionWhat constitutes a "contribution" to the research literature in Management? How do you know when your paper is making a contribution? More importantly, how do you write your paper to highlight its contribution? Over the course of a three day workshop, we will focus on identifying and framing contributions to the literatures in strategy and organization theory. Each of the days will be divided into two parts. In the morning sessions, we will read and discuss published papers that highlight ways of contributing to the literature. While some of these papers are big blockbusters, others are less well-known. Nonetheless, each paper finds some way to make a clear and important contribution to the research literature. In reading these papers, focus on answering the question: What was the contribution that got this paper published in a leading journal? In the afternoon sessions, we will focus on your own working papers. Each student is required to submit a working paper that will be the focus of his/her attention during the workshop. The objective in this part of the workshop is twofold. First, I hope that a discussion focusing on the contribution of your paper will enable you to improve the paper and the likelihood of publication in a top journal. Second, in my experience, one of the best ways in which to come to understand how to craft a paper that makes a contribution is to help others do so.
(BUS 900), Fall 2013. Download Syllabus

Strategy PhD Seminar
Course DescriptionStrategy PhD Seminar
(MHR 870), Fall 2014. Download Syllabus

Business Strategy (ExecMBA for Kohl's Corp)
Course DescriptionThis course develops concepts and analytical frameworks for creating sustainable competitive advantage. The perspective adopted is that of a general manager with overall responsibility for the performance of the firm (or of a business unit within the firm). Such a manager needs to understand the basis for the current performance of the firm and to identify those changes (inside or outside the firm) that are most likely to affect future performance adversely or that provide opportunities for the firm to improve its performance. The manager must then use the firm's resources to formulate and implement strategies to compete successfully in its competitive environment. My aim is to enhance your ability to assume a leadership role by cultivating the ability to make well- grounded and uncommonly insightful recommendations as to how the business actually is or should be competing. A strategy must define a specific problem or opportunity, the scope of the firm's activities, the logic through which the activities result in better performance, and what it is about the firm that allows it to better carry out those activities than its competitors.
(MHR 765 Section 32), Fall 2013. Download Syllabus

Business Strategy
Course DescriptionIntegrative approach to strategic management, including strategy formulation/implementation at business unit, corporate levels. Cases, discussion, lecture, simulation are used to communicate concepts. Emphasizes development of unique tools for analysis of
(MHR 723 Section 001), Spring 2015. Download Syllabus

Business Strategy
Course DescriptionIntegrative approach to strategic management,including strategy formulation/implementation at business unit,corporate levels. Cases,discussion,lecture,simulation are used to communicate concepts. Emphasizes development of unique tools for analysis of
(MHR 723 Section 001), Spring 2016.

Business Strategy
Course DescriptionIntegrative approach to strategic management, including strategy formulation/implementation at business unit, corporate levels. Cases, discussion, lecture, simulation are used to communicate concepts. Emphasizes development of unique tools for analysis of
(MHR 723 Section 1), Spring 2014. Download Syllabus

Global Strategy (Technion, Israel Institute of Technology)
Course DescriptionThe Global Strategy course is an advanced strategy course that will enhance your abilities to develop strategies for competing in the fast-changing global business environment. My aim is to help you develop the analytical skills necessary assume a leadership role by cultivating the ability to make well- grounded and uncommonly insightful recommendations as to how the business actually is or should be competing globally. A (global) strategy must define a specific problem or opportunity, the scope of the firm's activities, the logic through which the activities result in better performance, and what it is about the firm that allows it to better carry out those activities than its competitors. The course is organized around two central ideas. First, we challenge the naive logic that "going global" is a strategic imperative, and instead, treat it as a choice that must be weighed on its own merits. Second, we challenge the popular rhetoric of a “flat world,” and instead, recognize the enduring role of economic and institutional differences across countries. While these differences create challenges in tapping foreign markets, differences are the source of opportunity on the supply side. As a consequence, the key take-away from the course is a framework and set of analytical tools for developing global strategic initiatives that create value by bridging country differences or leveraging similarities.
(BUS 700), Spring 2014. Download Syllabus



Editorial and Reviewing Activities


Management Science (Associate Editor) - Since June 2014
Associate Editor

Strategic Management Journal - Since September 2013
Editorial Board Member

Strategy Science - Since September 2013
Editorial Board Member

Administrative Science Quarterly - Since January 2013
Editorial Board Member

Strategic Organization - January 2012 - December 2015
Editorial Board Member

Organization Science - Since September 2011
Editorial Board Member


Photograph of Hart Posen

Hart Posen

 
Associate Professor | Management & Human Resources
(608) 262-9449
4263 Grainger Hall