H. Igor Ansoff
1918 - 2002

Widely acknowledged as the father of strategic management. 


Ranked #27 in 2001. 


Travelled 5,600 miles on the Trans-Siberian Railway in 1924, in the middle of winter. 


Moscow in the 1930s encouraged the young Igor to challenge systems cultures.


Creator of the Ansoff Matrix, a marketing planning tool that assists organizations to determine its product and map strategic market growth. The matrix builds on the precept that choice is at the strategy making core and consists of four alternatives of marketing strategies: market penetration, product development, market development, and diversification. 

Ansoff was also careful to acknowledge that the overuse of strategic management tools can result in an overuse of analysis and was the first to coin the phrase “paralysis by analysis”.


Mathematician and business manager, Ansoff was born in Vladivostok in 1918. In 1937 he emigrated to the USA, receiving an MSc in the Dynamics of Rigid Bodies from Stevens Institute of Technology and a doctorate in applied mathematics from Brown University. He was professor at the USA International University (now Alliant) and served in the US Naval Reserve and as a liaison with the Russian Navy during the second world war. In 1981, the prestigious Igor Ansoff Award was launched in Holland and is given for management research in the study of strategic planning and management.


Corporate Strategy: An Analytic Approach to Business Policy for Growth and Expansion (McGraw-Hill, 1965); Strategic Management (Palgrave MacMillan, 1979); Implanting Strategic Management (Palgrave MacMillan 1984); The New Corporate Strategy (with Edward J McDonell, John Wiley & Sons, 1988); The Secrets of Strategic Management: The Ansoffian Approach (with Peter H Antoniou, BookSurge Publishing, 2006).

NATIONALITY: Russian-American

Media picks


“Ansoff merits his place in the ranks of strategy greats.”

Stuart Crainer & Des Dearlove, Thinkers50

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