The field of strategic and organization management is currently facing a number of new challenges which find their origins in the restless dynamics of environmental change and firms strategic action and thinking. As a result, we need to adapt and integrate existing theoretical lenses and conceptual categories or develop entirely new ones. In this vein, we propose the study of coopetition as a new category in strategy analysis. Whereas the eighties and nineties have been characterized by relevant developments in both competitive and cooperative perspectives intended as different research streams, the new millennium is exposing us to a new and, rather paradoxical, strategic behaviour known under the label of ‘coopetition strategy’. Coopetition strategy urges us to revisit thoroughly the concepts of both competition and cooperation in strategic management.
Coopetition highlights the need to overcome the oversimplified framework at the base of conventional approaches and proposes a description of more complex market structures where cooperation and competition merge together to form a new perspective. By widening the conventional boundaries of the two more familiar categories of competition and cooperation, coopetition challenges the traditional framework addressing the surge of complexity of actors’ roles, strategies, objectives, processes and rent seeking behaviours.