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Case Studies

As an ongoing part of our current research, we will write case studies that synthesize the facts we have learned from our research partners. Once our partner has approved a case study, we will make it available here for general use. Please check back regularly to view our latest work.

The following cases are written as teaching cases; however, they are longer than our ideal. As we use them in class, we will continue to refine the focus and shorten them. Please feel free to use them and then call or email us with your feedback.

The Trustees of Dartmouth College hold the copyright to all of the cases listed below. For permission to reproduce multiple copies, please contact us by email at glcenter@dartmouth.edu or by phone at 603-646-0898.


Analog Devices, Inc.: Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS)
Chris Trimble; Julie Lang
Length: 26 pages
Publication date: 2002
Case No. 2-0018

In the late 1980s, Analog Devices, Inc., a semiconductor company, developed a technology known as Microelectromagnetic Machines, or MEMS. The technology allows tiny moving parts to be embedded within traditional silicon chips. The potential applications are widespread. This case study chronicles the commercialization of MEMS technology for use in airbag actuation systems, and details the tensions that developed within ADI as the new venture failed to meet initial expectations.


Capston-White's Document Management and Production Services
Chris Trimble; Julie Lang
Length: 23 pages
Publication date: 2003
Case No. 2-0017

The development of multi-function devices that could copy, print, fax, and scan created a convergence in the markets for these devices. Copiers and printers had previously purchased and managed in very different manners by large organizations. Facing an uncertain future that could threaten its profitable printing franchise, CW launched an experimental venture offering new services to help large organizations more effectively manage there fleets of printing and copying assets.


Cisco Systems (A)
Philip Anderson; Vijay Govindarajan; Chris Trimble; Katrina Veerman
Length: 25 pages
Publication date: 2001
Case No. 1-0001

Cisco Systems prides itself as an "end-to-end networking company." The phrase describes not only their product line but the way they run their business. They created many of the e-business practices that later became cornerstones of the software packages used throughout industry to make businesses more efficient. Those case reviews their accomplishments and their method.


Cisco Systems (B)
Philip Anderson; Vijay Govindarajan; Chris Trimble; Katrina Veerman
Length: 6 pages
Publication date: 2001
Case No. 1-0002

As of March 2001, Cisco Systems enjoys a reputation as the most sophisticated e-business in the world. For its executives, the question of how to maintain this leadership position is paramount. Funding mechanisms, organizational models, and measures of successful innovation are just some of the issues that become increasingly complex as Cisco grows.


Technology Note: Internetworking Products
Philip Anderson; Vijay Govindarajan; Chris Trimble; Katrina Veerman
Length: 8 pages
Publication date: 2001
Case No. 1-0005

Intended as background reading for students unfamiliar with internetworking products and markets, this Technology Note can be used alongside the two Cisco Systems cases described above.


Corning Microarray Technologies
Chris Trimble; Gautam Bellur
Length: 25 pages
Publication date: 2003
Case No. 2-0020

In mid-2000, the scientific community reached a momentous milestone -- the complete mapping of the human genome. Researchers in the field of genomics were anxious to dig into a tremendous array of newly possible scientific inquiries, and needed efficient experimental apparatus for doing so. Building on its expertise in manufacturing processes requiring control of tiny quantities of fluid, Corning created a new venture to meet this need, offering reliable and low-cost DNA microarrays.


Hasbro Interactive
Chris Trimble
Length: 16 pages
Publication date: 2004
Case No. 2-0021

In the mid 1990s, Hasbro created Hasbro Interactive, a new business unit chartered to develop video games for PCs and other gaming systems based on Hasbro's many toy and game brands. After a few successful years, ambitions for Hasbro Interactive escalated dramatically. Would all games in the future be interactive?


Hindustan Lever
Chris Trimble
Length: 15 pages
Publication date: 2002
Case No. 2-0011

Hindustan Lever, Ltg (HLL), the Indian subsidiary of Unilever PLC, is one of the most respected multinationals operating in India and one of the first multinationals to recognize that the poor in developing countries represent an untapped growth opportunity. They developed innovative approaches to product development, sales, and marketing that were suitable for India's rural poor. Recognizing that most consumption in India was staple foods, HLL created and branded Kissan Annapurna Iodized Salt.


Hindustan Lever (Abridged)
Chris Trimble
Length: 10 pages
Publication date: 2002
Case No. 2-0011A

This abridged case includes only what HLL did without describing their approach to implementation. It has been used effectively to spur discussion about the role of business in society and corporate social responsibility.


New York Times Digital
Chris Trimble
Length: 21 pages
Publication date: 2002
Case No. 2-0006

In 1995, the New York Times, launched New York Times Digital, a new venture dedicated to building a profitable business focused on distributing news context in multimedia format online. In implementing the venture, the company created a unit that was quite distinct organizationally. Many challenges followed.


Stora Enso North America (SENA)
Jesse Johnson; Chris Trimble
Length: 23 pages
Publication date: 2002
Case No. 2-0001

Robert Leach, VP of information technology for SENA had a vision of building an IT infrastructure that connected all of the participants in the paper supply chain and launching new service businesses enabled by the new infrastructure. Through a detailed description of the first two years of this effort, this case highlights many internal and external barriers. A good case to illustrate the specific operational reasons why some expectations formed in the dot.com bubble were unrealistic.


Universitas 21 Global
Chris Trimble
Length: 20 pages
Publication date: 2003
Case No. 2-0019

In a move that could redefine the future of higher education, Thomson Learning, in partnership with a worldwide consortium of universities, created a new institution of higher education, Universitas 21 Global (U21G), that had no campus, and no classrooms. It existed only on the Internet. At launch, U21G offered only an MBA program, and marketed only in a few cities in Asia. But founders intended to add additional degrees and expand cross the continent.

View our full list of case studies »



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