Part A

Setting the Context: AnInterdependentWorld

Globalization, intense competition (often from unexpected quarters), demanding customers, regulatory changes, the relentless progress of technology – all are factors that recur high on the list of key challenges affecting businesses. How do they respond? Many management books, such as Thriving on Chaos by Tom Peters (1987), The Future 500 by Craig Hickman and Michael Silva (1987) and Competing for the Future by Gary Hamel and C. K. Prahalad (1994) offer prescriptions. A common thread in these is the need for organizations to be flexible, adaptive and to continually reinvent themselves.

The harsh message is – if they don’t they won’t survive. The average life of most sizeable corporations is less ...

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