Fiction & Fake News meet Management



Register for this free one-day, interdisciplinary workshop. Its aim is to engage business practitioners and academics from Cambridge and beyond to create a dialogue around the business and management implications arising from the blurring boundaries between reality and fiction in a “post-truth world”.

Event Details
Date: 18 October 2017
Time: 09:00-16:30
Venue: Castle Teaching Room (Cambridge Judge Business School), Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 1AG

Registration is free of charge, on a first-come first-served basis.

Much of the current debate about “post-truth” is centered on the role of the media to explain its rise. We aim to bring discussion around post-truth, fake news, and fiction from the world of media to that of management.

Business leaders and managers typically seek objective evidence and reliable information to make informed decisions. But this becomes problematic when many of the facts may be “alternative facts” – fabricated, falsified, fictitious, distorted, and deceitful. The spread of fake news and misinformation via media platforms can undermine the very basis of rational analysis and constructive debate. It can erode decision makers’ sense of right and wrong, it can question the notion of evidence-based management; it can cast doubts about the validity of new management techniques such as big data analytics.

In addition, when media and technology companies are allegedly themselves active participants in the fabrication and purveyance of fake news and fictions, what are the new moral responsibilities that arise? To manage in the age of fiction is to gain a better understanding of how disinformation is consumed and produced as well as the ethical and moral fallouts involved.

The workshop is an invitation for practitioners, including business leaders, media executives, venture investors, advertising agency specialists, lobbyists, as well as policy makers, to participate in a new action and research agenda through a joint-academic practitioner exploration of this emergent phenomenon. Together, we aim to generate a deeper understanding of the mechanisms and implications of managing in an age of false information and alternative truths.


Some questions that the workshop will explore include:

  • What are the unique and novel aspects that fake news brings above and beyond other dimensions of strategic decision making such as ambiguity, uncertainty and complexity?
  • How are facts construed as fiction and fiction construed as facts? How can we discern between facts and fiction in a time of blurring boundaries between the two?
  • How can business leaders more effectively deal with false facts and false claims in a post-truth world?
  • How can business leaders make effective business decisions when the information they rely on might be tainted by distortions of reality, deceptions, misinformation, delusions or falsifications?
  • What is the role of evidence-based management when the role of facts, truths and expertise has become problematic?
  • How should businesses respond to post-factual, post-truth attacks on their business?
  • How can businesses (re-)establish trust of consumers, shareholders and other stakeholders, where everyone is suspected of spreading fake news?


To read more information, click here.

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