Dovev Lavie, Engineer, Musician and Poet, Teaches Strategy and InnovationTHE NEW FULL PROFESSOR AT THE DEPARTMENT OF MANAGEMENT AND TECHNOLOGY STANDS OUT FOR HIS MULTIPLE ACADEMIC AND PERSONAL INTERESTS
If there is one thing you can’t say about Dovev Lavie is that he has a narrow range of interests. For many years now, he’s been playing brass instruments in symphonic orchestras. In Israel, his country of origin, he has published a couple of poetry books. “People do not understand how an engineer can write poetry. To me, creativity has many forms”. Since 1 September, Lavie has been aFull Professor at Bocconi’s Department of Management and Technology, after a few stints here as a Visiting Professor. “I really like the Department both socially and professionally”. He will be teaching a Masters course on business strategy, a doctoral course on innovation and technology management, and an MBA course on managing acquisitions and alliances.
Lavie decided to become an academic early on, while pursuing his undergraduate degree in Industrial Engineering and Management at Haifa’s Technion. He attended some MBA classes and was exposed to strategy topics. After spending a couple of years in the aerospace and defense industry, he pursued a PhD in Management at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. By then, he already had a few publications. “It was a very profound PhD program that gave me an edge”, he says. As strategic alliances were gaining in importance, he devoted his research to that topic. “I focused on the impact of the alliance portfolio on firm performance and on the ways the firm can capture value from its alliance relations”. Unlike prior work that emphasized the structure of alliance networks and the nature of alliance relations, he studied the role of resources that become available as the alliance portfolio evolves.
A second research topic in Lavie’s agenda concerns the question of how a firm can balance its investment in developing new knowledge (exploration) and the leveraging of existing knowledge that it has obtained (exploitation). “Scholars have called for an ambidextrous organization that can simultaneously engage in both exploration and exploitation, but reality shows that very few firms can accomplish that. I have proposed new organizational solutions to this dilemma in a series of studies on the performance implications of balancing exploration and exploitation”. With his industry background in information technology, Lavie found it only natural to set his empirical research in the technology sector, which is also rich in data on alliances and new products.
Professor Lavie is a recipient of many awards, among them the Academy of Management Newman Award for Best Paper based on a Dissertation (2007) and the Strategic Management Society Emerging Scholar Award (2012). In addition to his scholarly achievements, Lavie has engaged in several entrepreneurial initiatives. In 2015 he took the role of Vice Dean for MBA programs at Technion. In an effort to attract foreign students to Israel, he devised the Startup-MBA program. “It was an intensive practice-oriented program that enabled students to earn their MBA degree while starting their own company within one year”.
by Claudio Todesco