Award for research on flexible systems management

Professor Henk Volberda from Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) won the Flexibility Excellence Award 2017 from the Global Institute of Flexible Systems Management Society (GIFT). It was the first time the recognition was awarded. Prof. Volberda received the prize at the institute’s annual conference in New Delhi, India.

Professor Henk Volberda says he felt greatly honoured to receive this award at the GLOGIFT 2017 Conference in New Delhi. His recorded keynote speech was on re-examining strategic flexibility and managing change versus preservation, a topic he has been researching early in his career.

 “It’s nice to see that so many scholars and practitioners outside of Europe build further on my work,” says Prof. Volberda. “This also inspired me to work on a meta-study on the contributions of the strategic flexibility concept to the strategy field together with other scholars recently.”

Exemplary contribution

GIFT chairman and managing director Dr Dinesh Kumar Likhi says for the Flexibility Excellence Award, a committee of experts was formed to identify the contributions and efforts of academics worldwide in promoting the concept of flexibility

“After rigorous information gathering and subsequent analysis, the committee recommended Prof. Henk W. Volberda as the first recipient of this prestigious award,” says Dr Likhi. “The award was conferred upon him for his exemplary contribution in the area of flexible systems management which is recognised worldwide.”

Dr Likhi added that Volberda’s books Building the Flexible Firm: How to Remain Competitive (Oxford University Press, 1998) and in Dutch De Flexibele Onderneming: Strategieën voor Succesvol Concurreren (Kluwer, 2004) are widely acclaimed in the domain.

Professor Henk W. Volberda

Prof. Henk Volberda is a professor of strategic management and business policy in RSM’s Department of Strategic Management & Entrepreneurship. He has won several awards for his research in the area of organisational flexibility and strategic change, including the NCD Award, the ERASM Research Award, the Erasmus University Research Award, the Igor Ansoff Strategic Management Award, Cap Gemini Ernst & Young Strategy Award, the ERIM Impact Award and the SAP Strategy Award.

Professor Volberda has published more than 700 professional and scholarly publications over the last three decades with more than 80 publications about flexible systems management. His work is published in high-impact journals of reputed publishing houses.

Global Institute of Flexible Systems Management Society

The Global Institute of Flexible Systems Management Society aims to evolve and enrich the flexible systems management paradigm for the future. It instituted the Flexibility Excellence Award in 2017, which recognises the work of academics who have significantly contributed in the area of flexible systems management through their innovative approach and wisdom.

Their contributions in research output or new methods or mechanisms of operating business organisations must be greatly acknowledged by the research community and the corporate sector.

More information

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe’s top 10 business schools. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam – a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM’s primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who can become a force for positive change by carrying their innovative mindset into a sustainable future. Our first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes encourage them to become critical, creative, caring and collaborative thinkers and doers. Study information and activities for future students, executives and alumni are also organised from the RSM office in Chengdu, China.

For more information about RSM or this release, please contact Marianne Schouten, communications manager for RSM, on +31 10 408 2877 or by email at

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