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Strategic Planning: A Journey - MAN00038M

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  • Department: The York Management School
  • Module co-ordinator: Mr. Jonathan Fanning
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: M
  • Academic year of delivery: 2023-24

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 2 2023-24

Module aims

This module explores the theory and practice of strategy within the context of public service organisations, this is considered to include all for whom profit is not a fundamental issue, not just government but NGOs and the like.

The module focuses on the importance of context in public sector strategy, encouraging critical engagement with the economic, social and institutional factors that shape strategy, and their relation to issues of leadership, politics, identity and learning. It takes a highly critical position on the Strategy Consultant model, stratigikós stochastic and argues for an individual and imaginative approach to strategy formulation that takes a bespoke, reflective rather than a position based on applying models and cases in a prescriptive manner, which we call antanaclastic stochastic. It criticises the generic consultant approach from the economic theory of the declining rate of profit.

In doing so the module endeavours to illustrate the role of Strategy in the International Political Economy. There will be a variety of theoretical journal readings and a few key chapters from a variety of books. Students will undertake a group simulation or case study and be introduced to the practical factors that influence strategic decision making, the so called soft struggles such as personality clashes, egos, and individual ambitions which are an important part of strategy but are so often unengaged with academically.

Additional key readings and engagement are around the writings of SunTzu and others from the Warring States period, where we directly challenge the colonial era misinterpretations and abuse of this early strategic writing.

Module learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

  • Research a range of strategic analysis tools, models and techniques;

  • Select a number of these to develop and implement a plan of action to apply to a simulated public organisation;

  • Evaluate the effectiveness of the tools used;

  • Describe likely scenarios that will impact the simulated public organisation;

  • Reflect on the effectiveness of strategic management tools and techniques in learning, action and their own development and future as a strategist;

  • Appraise the role of formal planning in none-profit organisations.

Module content

  • Students will work on a game/case in diverse teams; the game/case will be dynamic with the decisions of one team affecting all the others potentially.
  • There will be competitive and cooperative elements in the case, therefore negotiation skills inside and outside the team will be integral to success.

  • Students will learn individual and group presentation skills.

  • Students will develop team working approaches.

  • There will be a consideration of the differences between public and private positions on strategic issues.

  • Students will have an opportunity to keep a reflexive diary of the type required by professional institutes for personal and professional development


Task Length % of module mark
Reflective Diary
N/A 0
Reflective Diary
N/A 0
Reflective Diary
N/A 60
Group Peer Assessment Report (verbal)
N/A 20
Group Video
N/A 20

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
N/A 20
PDP Evaluation
N/A 20
Resit Reflective Essay
N/A 60

Module feedback

Feedback will be given in accordance with the University Policy on feedback in the Guide to Assessment as well as in line with the School policy.

Indicative reading

  • A very short, fairly interesting and reasonably cheap book about studying strategy

  • Carter, Chris, 1970- ; Clegg, Stewart. ; Kornberger, Martin, 1974-

    Los Angeles, Calif. ; London : SAGE 2008

  • Mintzberg, H. (2008). Strategy bites back: it is a lot more, and less, than you ever imagined. Harlow: Financial Times Prentice Hall.

  • Johnson, G. (2001). Exploring public sector strategy. Harlow: Prentice Hall.

  • Glauco, D V. (2002), Does Assessed Multicultural Group, Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, vol. 27, issue 2, pp. 153-161.

  • Babnik Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Primorska, (2014). The mission statement: organisational culture perspective, Industrial management & data systems, vol. 114, issue 4, pp. 612-627.

  • Campbell, A. and Young, S. (1991). Creating a Sense of Mission, Long Range Planning, vol. 24, issue 4, pp. 10-20.

  • Chapman, (2006). Anxiety and defective decision making: an elaboration of the groupthink mode, management decision, vol. 44, issue 10, pp. 1391-1404.

  • Wilkinson, G. and Monkhouse, E. (1994), Strategic planning in public sector organizations,

  • Grant, Robert M., 1948- (2010). Contemporary strategy analysis: text and cases. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons Chapter: The Concept of Strategy.

  • Llewellyn, S. and Tappin, E. (2003), Strategy in the Public Sector: Management in the Wilderness, The Journal of Management Studies, vol. 40, issue 4, pp. 955-982.

  • Moore, M. F. (2009). Capitalism. Paramount

  • Garvin., David A., and Lynne C., Levesque., (2005), A Note on Scenario Planning, Harvard business review

  • Banks, Iain M,. The Player of Games, Banks, London : Macmillan, 1988

  • Use of weapons Banks, Iain. London : Orbit 1992 ©1990

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.