W. Chan Kim & Renée Mauborgne
2011 Ranking: #2
Winner: 2011 Thinkers50 Strategy Award
W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne are professors of strategy and management at INSEAD, and co-directors of the INSEAD Blue Ocean Strategy Institute in Fontainebleau, France. They are the authors of the worldwide bestselling strategy book Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant (2005).
To date, Blue Ocean Strategy has sold over 2 million copies, has been translated into a record-breaking 42 languages, and is a bestseller across five continents, making it one of the most successful business books of all time. In it, Kim and Mauborgne describe a world where most companies operate in overcrowded industries, and head-to-head competition creates "a bloody red ocean of rivals fighting over a shrinking profit pool." Far better, they say, to create a clear blue ocean of uncontested market space through value innovation.
Their research that looked at more than 150 strategic moves over a 100-year period and in over 30 industries, and has since been extended to include not-for-profit organizations, the public sector, and entire countries.
Kim and Mauborgne have also authored a number of highly influential Harvard Business Review articles, including "Value innovation: The Strategic Logic of High Growth" (1997), "Fair Process: Managing in the Knowledge Economy" (1997), “Creating New Market Space” (1999), “Knowing a Winning Business Idea When You See One” (2000), “Charting Your Company’s Future” (2002), "Tipping Point Leadership" (2003), “Blue Ocean Strategy” (2004), and "How Strategy Shapes Structure" (2009). Their Value Innovation and Fair Process articles were selected as among the best classic articles ever published in Harvard Business Review.