B321L Crisis Management / Online


Adjunct Professor Dr. Rob Britton (Georgetown University)

Course description: B321L
Language: English
Recommended for this semester or higher: 5
ECTS-Credits: 6
Course can be taken as part of following programs/modules: International Economics
International Business Administration
Economics and Business Administration
Prerequisite for:


Prerequisites: ---
Limited attendance: 30
Course Type: Lecture (3 weekly lecture hours)

Online Block Course:
November 9 until 13 from 2.30 s.t. - 6.30 pm (German time). Final exam for 90 minutes on Friday, November 27 from 2.30 s.t. - 4 pm (German time).

Because this is a compressed course, attendance is compulsory for all days!

Please see below for registration details.

Limited to 30 participants. Registration open for all (no first-come, first-served): Registration will open on Monday, October 19, 2020 on ILIAS - end of registration time: Sunday, November 1, 2020 (23:55 p.m.). If the number of applications (limited to 30 participants) exceeds the number of places available, we unfortunately will not be able to accept all of the applicants. In this case, a random selection will be made from all the applications received. (10 places are reserved for our incoming students who have not yet received their ILIAS-Login. Please write an email to marketingspam, this is on a first come, first served basis).

Downloads: in ILIAS
Method of Assessment:

Written exam, or oral examination, or assignments or presentation or online assessment
Examination Timetable will be available on the website of the examination office.

Assessment will be 70% in-class projects, team presentation, and individual student participation; and 30% final exam.
Details will be announced in a welcome email for all participants.


Familiarize students with a broad range of crises and management responses, especially in global settings
Build understanding and appreciation for the comprehensive 360º view of crisis management
Develop understanding of best practices, with emphasis on practical strategies to mitigate impact. Learning will be through a significant amount of reading (textbook and case studies), and class lectures from a professor with significant professional and personal experience with crisis management.  We will expect that by the end of the course you will have read all the assigned material.

Objectives: Students will learn basic principles of crisis management, best-practice strategies and tactics to effectively manage acute, serial, and chronic crises, and managerial and personal approaches to living with a workplace in crisis.  We will of course, discuss management of the COVID-19 mega-crisis from inception to November, with emphasis on different national and corporate approaches.

Required Reading – Case Studies and Articles:

Cleeran, Kathleen, Harald J. van Heerde, and Marnik G. Dekimpe, „Rising from the Ashes: How Brands and Categories Can Overcome Product-Harm Crises,“ Journal of Marketing, Vol. 77 (2013), pp. 58-77

Greyser, Stephen A., „Johnson & Johnson: The Tylenol Tragedy“ (Harvard Business School, 1982)
Lu, Jiangyong, Zhigang Tao, and Claudia H. L. Woo, „Sanlu’s Melamine-Tainted Milk Crisis in China (University of Hong Kong, 2009)
Rotemberg, Julio O., „BP’s Macondo: Spill and Response (Harvard Business School, 2012)
Schwartz, Mark S., Wesley Cragg, and Michael W. Hoffman, „An Ethical Approach to Crisis Management“ (IESE Insight Magazine, 2012)
Smith, N.Craig and Erin McCormick, „Volkswagen’s Emissions Scandal: How Could It Happen?“ (INSEAD, 2018)
Teagarden, Mary B. and Andreas Schotter, „Blood Bananas: Chiquita in Colombia“ (Thunderbird School of Global Management, 2010)
Turpin, Dominique, „McDonald’s Argentina (IMD, 2006)
Wong, Gilbert, Millie Kwan, and Mary Ho, „Learning from "Bird Flu": How the Hong Kong Government Learnt to Deal with a Crisis”
Supplementary Reading:
Textbook: Griffin, Andrew, Crisis, Issues and Reputation Management (London: Kogan Page, 2014)