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Unlocking dynamic capabilities in the Scotch whisky industry, 1945–present

MacKenzie, Niall G.; Perchard, Andrew; Mackay, David; Burt, George


Niall G. MacKenzie

Andrew Perchard

David Mackay

George Burt


In this article we examine the development of the Scotch whisky industry since 1945 through the lens of dynamic capabilities. We explain how sui generis acts—novel initiatives outwith the established repertoire of practices of a firm or industry—by external actors joining the industry helped unlock dynamic capabilities at the firm level in the industry which in turn drove change across the sector after a series of takeovers. We detail the key structural changes in the Scotch whisky industry and demonstrate how important external actors can be in effecting sector level change by extending and connecting our analysis to existing debates in business history and strategy research.

Journal Article Type Article
Online Publication Date Jun 16, 2022
Deposit Date Jul 7, 2022
Publicly Available Date Jul 7, 2022
Journal Business History
Print ISSN 0007-6791
Electronic ISSN 1743-7938
Publisher Routledge
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Keywords Dynamic capabilities, Scotch whisky, sector change, innovation, marketing
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