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Strategic Management of Knowledge Assets


This program was formerly called Disrupting the Competition Through Knowledge-Based Strategies.

Program Overview

Today few businesses can expect their competitive advantages to last. This means that for your firm to grow you need to continuously and profitably create new advantages and innovation platforms. Core to this capability is deep insight into how to create and exploit a network of critical knowledge assets. Strategically managing your knowledge assets — including your technology, your core competences, the unique experience of your employees, and your intellectual property — will set you up to continuously disrupt your competition.

Strategic Management of Knowledge Assets will provide you with the latest thinking on this knowledge-driven approach to innovative growth, and with practical tools and frameworks to apply directly in your organization. The program is led by Wharton’s experts in strategy, innovation, and talent management, including Ian MacMillan, co-author of The Entrepreneurial Mindset and Market Busters; Martin Ihrig, who has helped organizations including the ATLAS collaboration at CERN identify and map their critical knowledge assets; Karl Ulrich, Wharton’s vice dean of innovation and professor of operations and information management, and Peter Cappelli, director of Wharton’s Center for Human Resources and professor of management.

By the end of the program, you will have the tools to help your organization prosper in the knowledge age, creating a disruptive competitive advantage by:

  • identifying and strategically managing competitive knowledge
  • managing talent and the tacit knowledge imbedded in that talent
  • developing strategies to deal effectively with technical innovations and accelerate organic growth
  • selectively and strategically sharing your corporate knowledge, effectively absorbing other organizations’ knowledge, targeting growth-generating acquisitions, and forging advantageous alliances
  • discovering entrepreneurial opportunities in a global knowledge economy and reconfiguring your competitive approach to new and existing markets
  • innovating around the customer experience and around reconfigured offerings and services

Impact & Experience

Strategic Management of Knowledge Assets addresses one of the most important concerns of today’s strategists and decision makers, providing insights and tools to help identify and manage key knowledge assets. Participants will learn how to better utilize existing knowledge, decide which knowledge assets to share and which to shield, and identify outside knowledge that should be absorbed. The program will also help participants strategically create and develop new knowledge, from deep insights into customer experience to business models for growth in uncertain environments.

  • The Entrepreneurial Management of Knowledge
  • Developing and Managing Talent
  • Customer-Centric Innovation
  • Market-Busting
  • Strategy-Driven R&D
  • Discovery-Driven Planning

Who Attends This Program

Strategic Management of Knowledge Assets is designed for senior-level executives who are involved in creating and maintaining a competitive advantage, including those charged with strategic planning and business and corporate development, and those responsible for strategic innovation through product development and R&D. It is also particularly beneficial for executives tasked with merger-related integration issues and with staying ahead of increased global competition.

To further leverage the value and impact of Strategic Management of Knowledge Assets, we encourage companies to send cross-functional teams of executives to Wharton. We offer group enrollment benefits to companies sending four or more participants to this program.

Please note: at the request of the faculty, we are unable to admit strategy consultants into the program at this time.


  • Ian MacMillan, DBA

    Academic Director

    The Dhirubhai Ambani Professor, Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship; Director, Sol C. Snider Entrepreneurial Research Center, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Entrepreneurship, new venture management, strategic managementSee Faculty Bio

  • Martin Ihrig, PhD

    Adjunct Associate Professor, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Strategy, Entrepreneurship, Knowledge, InnovationSee Faculty Bio

  • Peter Cappelli, DPhil

    George W. Taylor Professor of Management, Professor of Management; Director, Center for Human Resources, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Human resource practices, public policy related to employment, talent and performance managementSee Faculty Bio

  • Karl Ulrich, ScD

    CIBC Endowed Professor; Professor of Operations, Information and Decisions; Professor of Management; Vice Dean of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, The Wharton School

    Research Interests: Environmental issues, product design and development, innovationSee Faculty Bio

Program Logistics

Tuition for Philadelphia programs includes lodging and meals. Prices are subject to change. Contact a member of the Wharton Executive Education Client Relations team for more information on course specifics and to discuss how this program can meet your professional development needs. Please contact them by email or by phone at +1.215.898.1776.

Plan Your Stay


Molly Russin

“Learning how to capture and share knowledge is invaluable to a company’s ability to innovate, regardless of whether you are a large organization, like Merck, or a small start-up. In the Customer Strategy and Innovation group where I work, we constantly ask ourselves, ‘What do we know?’ ‘What do our customers know?’ and ‘How can we collaborate and innovate together?’

This Wharton program came at an ideal time since we recently went through a reorganization where four groups came together as one. Since each of these groups has different ways of storing their knowledge assets, we were all represented in the class.

A big takeaway was that when it comes to your knowledge assets, it’s okay to not keep everything — and in fact, you need to be vigilant about deciding what to keep and what to discard in your e-repositories, team spaces, and etc. Then you can begin the work of mapping your knowledge assets, from unstructured information (what an individual knows) to structured (like play books and process maps) and from undiffused (inside the company only) to diffused (outside the company).

As we start to use this process, we will be able to leverage our knowledge in a way we haven’t before to truly drive innovation and collaboration, both inside Merck and outside the company as well.” *
 Molly Russin, Customer Strategy & Innovation, Merck

*The above comments are the personal views of the contributor/participant and do not represent the views or position of Merck/MSD.

Strategic Management of Knowledge Assets was very powerful in the way Wharton equips you with a framework and tools to think about how to best manage your strategic assets, whether they are represented by employees’ experience, critical knowledge held in patents or even disruptive business models — anything that can give you an edge over competitors in decision making and innovation to keep your business ahead of the pack.”
— Guy-Edward Waterland, Founder/CEO, CronLab Ltd., a UK-based IT content security company

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