At BHI, we believe that leadership starts in the mind and that ideas precede action. We bring the ideas and inspiration that will help forward-looking leaders shape their next game.
We engage leaders in provocative discussion and experimentation to expand the boundaries of business theory and practice. We provide the foundation for future, pivotal action because today’s ideas create tomorrow.
Since its founding in 1963, BCG has become known for its analytical approach to problem-solving, as well as the emphasis it places on the exploration and development of new business ideas and pursuits. Notably, BCG’s founder, Bruce D. Henderson pioneered the field of corporate strategy and developed concepts like the Experience Curve and the Growth-Share Matrix. Many of Bruce’s publications are now considered classics of strategy thinking and serve as an integral part of many MBA curriculums.
At the BCG Henderson Institute, our goal is to carry on Bruce’s legacy of pushing new thinking in business strategy, competitive advantage, economics, technology, and beyond to help business leaders navigate the increasingly complex and dynamic world of business.
BHI’s roots date back to the founding of the Strategy Institute in 1998 by Bolko von Oetinger, a former BCG Managing Director and Senior Partner in the firm’s strategy practice. The Strategy Institute was created with the goal of formalizing a research body within BCG to help identify and develop ideas that will change the way business leaders think about strategy.
In 2008, under the leadership of former BCG CEO Hans-Paul Buerkner, the firm launched its BCG Fellows program. BCG recognized the importance of supporting the company’s most accomplished thought leaders to advance and disseminate new ideas across the breadth of BCG’s client work—and across the business world more broadly.
With the establishment of the Fellows’ program, the BHI Ambassadorship program was also introduced. Ambassadors are emerging thought leaders selected from the firm’s offices around the world. They drive research topics and support research teams, typically on a one year rotational program, and partner with established BCG thought leaders.
With the firm’s emphasis on the importance and value of thought leadership, under the CEO tenure of Rich Lesser, the BCG Henderson Institute was formed in 2015. It was set up as a dedicated space within the firm to drive BCG’s innovation agenda and to bring together the firm’s forward-looking research teams underneath one umbrella.
The launch took place on April 30, 2015 in honor of what would have been Bruce Henderson’s 100th birthday, with Martin Reeves as the institute’s global leader.
BHI was based on three pillars: the Strategy Institute, which Reeves had been leading since 2008 following Oetinger’s retirement, and which is now called the Strategy Lab, the BCG Fellows program, and a new Center for Macroeconomics, which develops and articulates the firm’s view on macroeconomic topics, led by Philipp Carlsson-Szlezak.
At the same time, the Innovation Sounding Group governing body was also formed. This is a group of senior BCG leaders dedicated to supporting, inspiring, and guiding upstream innovation at BCG. They ensure maximum impact, from setting a holistic research agenda and priorities for the firm to providing guidance on core research projects.
In 2019, the BHI was continuing to expand its presence, influence, and breadth of topics, tech and AI expert François Candelon, was appointed its global leader. His objective is to continue this expansion, in response to today’s increasingly complex business landscape.