Winning hearts and minds: Field theory and the three dimensions of strategy

Brayden G. King, Edward T. Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Strategy involves more than seeking to accomplish goals, innovate, and improve financial performance. We offer a field-theoretic perspective that distills three key dimensions of strategy: the need to accrue and mobilize resources, maintain an organization's status, and achieve greater levels of power and influence. Strategy evolves as actors seek cooperative partners or come into conflict with other actors who hold competing worldviews. Attaining strategic advantages depends greatly on actors' abilities to shape the perceptions of others. Actors must be able to win the public's hearts and minds if they are to gain positions of prominence and to influence the rules of the game that shape who wins or loses. Much strategic action evolves from these contests over shaping key audiences' perceptions. Field theory, in our view, provides a more holistic view of strategy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)134-141
Number of pages8
JournalStrategic Organization
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 2014


  • Field theory
  • political economy
  • power and politics
  • social and political strategies
  • social movements
  • topics and perspectives

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Education
  • Industrial relations
  • Strategy and Management


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