Prof. Claus D. Jacobs, Ph.D.

Member of the Board of Directors, Professor of Public Management and Organization, Head of KPM Executive Education (MPA, CeMaP)

As organizational scholar, Claus‘ research focuses on strategy development and implementation in pluralistic organizations as well as on the dynamics of organizational change, identity and culture. He is a visiting professor at University of St. Gallen as well as an Associate Fellow at Saïd Business School, University of Oxford.

His work has been published in Academy of Management Journal, Organization Studies, Journal of Management Studies, Strategic Organization, Long Range Planning, Human Relations, Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, Journal of Organizational Change Management, Journal of Business Strategy, Journal of Management Inquiry, Scandinavian Journal of Management, Voluntas - International Journal of Voluntary and Non-profit Organizations as well as in MIT Sloan Management Review.

He is member of the editorial boards of Journal of Management Studies, Long Range Planning, Scandinavian Journal of Management and Systemic Practice. He reviews for Academy of Management Journal, British Journal of Management, Culture and Organization, Human Relations, Management Learning, Journal of Management Studies, Organization, Organization Studies, Strategic Management Journal und Strategic Organization. He serves also as a reviewer for the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF) and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) in the UK.

Claus is a founding member of the Strategy-as-Practice International Network ( and member of the Academy of Management Special Interest Group ‘Strategizing Activities and Practice’ Executive Committee (

A graduate of Witten/Herdecke University in Germany, he holds a Ph.D. from Trinity College Dublin (Ireland). After three years as a Senior Research Fellow in ‘Strategic Change and Innovation’ at Imagination Lab Lausanne, he served as Swiss National Science Foundation Professor in Strategy and Organization at University of St. Gallen.



  • Strategy Development and Strategy Work
  • Pluralistic Organizations
  • Public Management
  • Organizational Change
  • Organizational Identity

Current Projects

"How 'new work' settings shape organizational identity beliefs"

"Undoing stigma – Enacting palliative care in children's hospital"

"Making sense of reliability threats: Exploring risk work in Swiss prisons"

"How do social entrepreneurs persuade backers through verbal and visual Communication?"

"How do small and medium-sized social welfare organizations cope with organizational challenges triggered by digitization?"

Past Projects 

„swiss bee ‘O‘ diversity“ – Biodiversität im Siedlungsraum durch Wildbienenförderung“ (SUSTAINABILITY)

Funded by: 2015-2018 Gebert Rüf Foundation – 
Project partners: Hans Ramseier, Claudio Sedivy

„Seeking strategic coherence – Balancing internal and external legitimacy in pluralistic settings“ (STRATEGY)

Swiss National Science Foundation Professorship (2012-2014) at University of St. Gallen
Funded by: Swiss NSF 

„Strategy as discourse – Reconstructing a social practice“ (STRATEGY)

Swiss National Science Foundation Professorship (2008-2012) at University of St. Gallen
Funded by: Swiss NSF 

„Practices of strategizing“ (STRATEGY)

Funded by: University of St. Gallen Research Fund (2006-2008)

„Technology in action at CERN IT“ (DIGITIZATION)

Funded by: University of St. Gallen Research Fund (2005-2006)


We supervise master theses of the Master PMP, within the scope of public management, organization and strategy of public organizations.

The following topics are particularly compatible with our own research agenda and expertise:


  • Strategic management in public organizations
  • Strategic analysis of the organization and its environment
  • Strategy development, implementation and control
  • Strategic change



  • Organizational change and transformation
  • Organizational culture
  • Organizational identity
  • Interorganizational/interdepartmental/interprofessional collaboration



  • Integrating sustainable development into administrative practices
  • Sustainable development as a normative organizational goal

Other topics may also be considered after consultation.

Methodologically, our expertise lies in interpretive, qualitative designs, especially case studies. In principle, a qualitative empirical investigation follows the logic of a "U-shape" presented here. Each of these argumentative steps basically represents a chapter of the thesis.

In this sense, and if you contact us, we ask you to briefly outline the following aspects on 1-2 pages:

  1. "Hook": general question of the thesis
  2. Concepts, scientific literature and research question
  3. Method and data

You are welcome to contact us at