Academy of Strategic Management Journal (Print ISSN: 1544-1458; Online ISSN: 1939-6104)


Towards Strategic Agility: Intellectual Roots, Key Emergent Concepts and Future Directions

Author(s): Kyriakos Christofi, Loukia Ch. Evripidou, Lycourgos Hadjiphanis, Pieris Chouri

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to examine the phenomenon of strategic agility thought various theoretical lenses, with the ultimate objective being to identify those critical factors and mechanisms that contribute towards the development of strategic agility. While the concept of strategic agility has been gaining momentum among various key scholars, there is an outstanding gap in the literature regarding the way that critical factors among different theoretical views and disciplines can be codified and connected to provide a holistic model that enables organizations to cultivate strategic agility capabilities. Specifically, several studies that emphasize on strategic agility, identify critical factors in a single theoretical perspective, and yet the literature and empirical studies lack a holistic approach that integrates all the factors in order to provide a comprehensive overview to the field.

Design/Methodology/Approach: This paper follows a narrative literature review and focuses on two main streams. Firstly, it defines the nature, and the main capabilities of strategic agility, and secondly discusses the main critical factors that facilitate strategic agility as those emerge from various theoretical perspectives.

Findings/Results: The literature review indicates that strategic agility is characterized by three meta-capabilities, namely, strategic sensitivity, leadership unity, and resource fluidity and those capabilities enable organizations to participate in high-velocity competitive environments, while facing fast-paced changes in different directions. Paradox theory, ambidexterity and strategic change are found to be crucial for achieving strategic agility, where factors related to knowledge management, information technology, leadership, and human resources management specifically are identified as equally important.

Originality/Value: The overall aim of the research is to bridge the gap in the literature by providing a holistic investigation towards strategic agility, as the title clearly suggests. This paper serves as a conceptual foundation based on which empirical studies can examine the integration of those factors and their intra/inter relations that enable the cultivation of the meta-capabilities of strategic agility.

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