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A strategy is a long term plan of action designed to achieve a particular goal, most often "winning". Strategy is differentiated from tactics or immediate actions with resources at hand. Originally confined to military matters, the word has become commonly used in many disparate fields, such as:

  • Business strategy

In psychology a strategy is a sequence of actions, thoughts and feelings used to achieve a particular goal.

Origins of the word

The word derives from the Greek word stratēgos (which derives from two words: "stratos" - army & "ago" - which is ancient Greek for leading/guiding/moving to), which referred to a 'military commander' during the age of Athenian Democracy.

Casual and Formal Interpretations of the concept

A strategy is typically an idea that distinguishes a course of action by its hypothesis that a certain future position offers an advantage for acquiring some designated gain. In other words a strategy is a long term plan of action designed to achieve a particular goal, most often "winning".

Characteristics of strategic as opposed to tactical thinking

Strategies in game theory

In game theory, a strategy refers to one of the options that a player can choose. That is, every player in a non-cooperative game has a set of possible strategies, and must choose one of them.

A strategy must specify what action will happen in each contingent state of the game - e.g. if the opponent does A, then take action B, whereas if the opponent does C, take action D.

Strategies in game theory may be random (mixed) or deterministic (pure). That is, in some games, players choose mixed strategies. Pure strategies can be thought of as a special case of mixed strategies, in which only probabilities 0 or 1 are assigned to actions.

See also


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