P.P.M.A.R. (Pursey) Heugens

Full Professor
Rotterdam School of Management (RSM)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Fellow ERIM
Field: Strategy & Entrepreneurship
Affiliated since 2005

Pursey Heugens is a professor of organisation theory, development, and change at the Department of Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship, Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM).

His research interests include comparative corporate governance, business ethics, and bureaucracy, institutional, and demographic theories of organisation.

Professor Heugens has won numerous awards for his research and teaching. He currently serves on the editorial boards of six scholarly journals. His research has been published in academic journals including the Academy of Management Journal, the Academy of Management Review, Organization Studies, and the Journal of Management Studies.

His most recent works argues that the field of organisation theory is locked into a state of permanent failure due to powerful centrifugal forces which prevent it from producing a unified theory of organisational effectiveness – while equally strong centripetal forces keep university administrators and policy makers from cashing in their chips.

He offers three research strategies that might end the stalemate by increasing the integration, relevance and realism of current theories of organisation.

He obtained his PhD from RSM in 2001.

Key Publications (13)

  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R., Oosterhout, J. van & Vromen, J.J. (2004). The Social Institutions of Capitalism: Evolution and Design of Social Contracts. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (Ed.). (2001). Strategic issues management: Implications for corporate performance (ERIM Ph.D series research in management, ISSN 1568-1726 ; 7). Rotterdam: ERIM.
  • Kroezen, J.J. & Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (2012). Organizational Identity Formation: Processes of Identity Imprinting and Enactment in the Dutch Microbrewing Landscape. In M. Schultz, S. Maguire, A. Langley & H. Tsoukas (Eds.), Perspectives on Process Organization Studies Volume 2 (pp. 89-127). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (2010). Social institutions of capitalism. In G. Ritzer & J.M. Ryan (Eds.), Concise Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology. Oxford: Blackwell.
  • Osadchiy, S., Bogenrieder, I. & Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (2010). Organizational learning through problem absorption: A processual view. In T. Hernes & S. Maitlis (Eds.), Perspectives on Process Organization Studies. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. & Oosterhout, J. van (2008). Much ado about nothing: A conceptual critique of corporate social responsibility. In D.S. Siegel, D. Matten, A. McWilliams & A. Crane (Eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Corporate Social Responsibility (pp. 197-223). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (2007). Organizations and the theory of the firm. In G. Ritzer (Ed.), The Blackwell encyclopedia of Sociology (pp. 3326-3331). Oxford: Blackwell.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (2007). Social institutions of capitalism. In G Ritzer (Ed.), The Blackwell encyclopedia of Sociology (pp. 395-398). Oxford: Blackwell.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (2005). Issues management: Core understandings and scholarly development. In P. Harris & C. Fleisher (Eds.), The Handbook of Public Affairs (pp. 481-500). London: Sage.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R., Oosterhout, J. van & Vromen, J.J. (2004). Social Contract Theories: E Pluribus Unum? In P.P.M.A.R Heugens & J. Van Oosterhout (Eds.), The Social Institutions of capitalism: Evolution and Design of Social Contracts (pp. 1-19). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R., Kaptein, S.P., Oosterhout, J. van & Wempe, J.F.D.B. (2002). Ethical Criteria for Corporations. In S.P. Kaptein & J. Wempe (Eds.), The Balanced Company: a Theory of Corporate Integrity (pp. 227-262). Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Oosterhout, J. van, Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. & Essen, M. van (2013). The effect of blockholders in corporate governance. RSM Insight, 13 (1), 18-19.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (2009). Een mooie toekomst voor een chronisch tekortschietend vakgebied. Holland Management Review, 125 (-), 2-8.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R., Kaptein, S.P. & Nieuwenboer, N.A. den (2007, December 20). Liever high-trust toezicht. Het Financiële Dagblad
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R., Van Den Bosch, Frans, A.J. & Riel, C.B.M. van (2001). Stakeholder integratie: werken aan wederzijds versterkende relaties. M en O, 55 (4), 5-26.
  • Van Den Bosch, Frans, A.J., Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. & Riel, C.B.M. van (1998). De introductie van GMO-soja in Nederland. Beschrijving en analyse van de communicatie en de strategie van het margarine-, vetten- en oliën-cluster in de periode 1992-1998. (Extern rapport). Rotterdam: Corporate Communication Centre.
  • Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (1998). Naar een nieuwe definitie van crisismanagement: plaatsbepaling. Tijdschrift voor Strategische Bedrijfscommunicatie, 4 (2), 16-17.
Ilaria Orlandi

Open PhD in Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship

Guus Hendriks

Home Country Conditions for International Investment

Ruxi Wang

The Effectiveness of the Environmental Institutions in China

  • Role: Promotor
  • PhD Candidate: Ruxi Wang
  • Time frame: 2012 -
Jorien Pruijssers

An Organizational Perspective on Auditor Conduct

Michel Lander

Profits or Professionalism? On designing professional service firms

Luciana Ferreira

Attention Mosaics: Studies of organizational attention

Pursey Heugens

Strategic Issues Management: Implications for Corporate Performance

Editorial positions

  • Journal of Business Ethics

    Editorial Board

  • Corporate Reputation Review

    Editorial Board

  • Business and Society

    Editorial Board

  • Business Ethics Quarterly

    Editorial Board

  • Journal of Public Affairs

    Editorial Board

  • Strategic Organization

    Editorial Board

Capturing the strategic value of corporate venturing

Today’s business environment is characterized by fast and frequent change that is often unpredictable. In order to be able to better compete in such turbulence, companies need to invest in continuous renewal and innovation. However, the volatile business environment puts pressure on the internal development of new ideas as time-to-market is getting shorter all the time and unexpected change may come from new industry entrants rather than from incumbent firms. As a consequence, the external sourcing of new ideas and technologies is becoming more and more important. While traditionally firms have emphasized mergers and acquisitions and strategic alliances as primary vehicles for company growth, the use of corporate venture capital has gained importance over the past decades. Corporate venture capital investments are equity investments made by incumbent firms in small, privately held companies, allowing incumbents to tap into the innovative power of startup companies. These young, entrepreneurial ventures are characterized by agility and innovativeness and can play an important role in the transformation of markets and industries. To access the knowledge that resides in these startups, many companies have set up corporate venturing programs. These programs are designed to help new ventures further learn from new ventures, while helping them to further develop. By making small investments into emerging technologies, the investing firm can gain access to new developments, while deterring commitment until the uncertainty about the opportunity has resolved.

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PhD in Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship

The Department of Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship at the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University provides a strong research environment, with numerous faculty members and PhD students working across nearly all relevant fields of the wider strategic management field. Three characteristics make the Department an excellent environment for high-quality candidates to pursue a PhD.

  • First, we pride ourselves in our excellent PhD placement record, and our graduates routinely find placements in top schools worldwide. Recent placements include INSEAD, Judge (Cambridge), Desautels (McGill), HEC Paris, ETH Zurich, Otto Besheim (WHU), and Moore (University of South Carolina).
  • Second, the department hosts specialists in a wide variety of methodological traditions, including survey and archival data analysis, longitudinal econometric analysis, meta-analysis, case studies, grounded theory, and fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis.
  • Third, our department is well-connected internationally. It structurally hosts visiting professors like Gerry George (SMU) and Ed Zajac (Northwestern), and our own faculty have held visiting positions at schools like Imperial, Kellogg, MIT, and Wharton.

In short, the Department offers one of the most stimulating and productive environments for pursuing a PhD in Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship in North-western Europe.

PhD research in the Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship group at the Rotterdam School of Management is expected to take place within four main research themes that represent currently ongoing research:

  1. Corporate Entrepreneurship;
  2. Strategic Renewal: New Managerial Roles and Organizational Forms;
  3. Corporate Governance and Competitiveness.
  4. Global Strategy.

Although research that cuts across these four themes is encouraged, candidates are expected to express and explain their preferences for one or more research themes in the cover letter of their application.

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ERIM Research Seminar
ERIM Research Clinic
ERIM Institute Event
ERIM Inaugural Address Research in Management Series
  • ERIM Top Article Award (2007)


  • ERIM Award for 'Outstanding Performance by a Young Researcher' (2005)


  • ERIM Dissertation Award (2003)



Visiting address

Office: Mandeville Building T07-57
Burgemeester Oudlaan 50
3062 PA Rotterdam

Postal address

Postbus 1738
3000 DR Rotterdam


Latest publication

Essen, M. van, Carney, M., Gedajlovic, E.R. & Heugens, P.P.M.A.R. (2015). How does family control influence firm strategy and performance? A meta-analysis of U.S. publicly-listed firms. Corporate Governance: An International Review, 23 (1), 3-24. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/corg.12080[go to publisher's site]