Academic Resources

What Is a Business Case

What Is a Business Case

  • Based on real experience/problem
  • Written in narrative form (as a story)
  • Intended to teach a skill or lesson
  • Usually lacks an ending (students left to resolve the problem/issue through their own involvement in decision-making process)
  • Can be short or long – – shorter is better
  • Can be simple or complex

Click to reveal the different types of cases

Case length varies widely…

Reasons for a Long Case

  • Students aren’t familiar with the industry and/or company, and background on the industry is important to understanding the problem in the case.
  • The case spans several years, & important to cover time span.
  • The case contains several key actors, and all of their actions are important to understanding the problem in the case
  • The decision in case requires assimilation of extensive data.

Reasons for a Shorter Case

  • Most students prefer shorter cases
  • Some students (particularly EMBAs) may not have as much time available
  • Easier to have a productive case discussion if students have actually read and prepared the case