Center for Innovation and Education



Oliver Schlake, Ph.D.

Areas of Expertise

Technology Transfer,
High-Growth Business Strategies,
Research Portfolio Optimization,
Technology Forecasting,
Corporate Venturing,
Business Strategy Development

Oliver Schlake, Ph.D.

Dr. Oliver Schlake is a Clinical Professor and Senior Executive Teaching Fellow at the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, College Park; a senior business consultant, entrepreneur and researcher. Dr. Schlake is a multi-award winning professor, teaching classes at the Undergraduate and Graduate level as well as for the Executive MBA program in Innovation Management, Industry and Competitor Analysis, Business Strategy, Corporate Venturing, Entrepreneurship and Creativity for Business Leaders.

He earned a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Paderborn's "Heinz Nixdorf Institute", Germany. His Master's Degree is in Industrial Engineering and Business Administration from the same institution.

Dr. Schlake has authored and co-authored four books and 60 journal publications on long-term strategic planning, technology management and business intelligence. His current research interest is in the field of innovation strategy, scenario planning, business foresight, and corporate entrepreneurship. His work on collaborative scenario-planning is known worldwide and applied by several large organizations as their core strategic planning tool.

As a strategic advisor and management consultant, he specializes in business foresight, scenario planning and innovation strategy design. For over 20 years Dr. Schlake has helped organizations and individuals to better respond to uncertainty, change and complexity with innovative, flexible and future robust strategies. His expertise from more than 80 major strategy projects along with the unique processes he developed, have enabled organizations to more effectively anticipate and successfully respond to upcoming challenges.

He has worked as a consultant in more than fifteen different industries in North America, Europe, and Africa for over forty different industry leaders, not-for-profit organizations and government agencies. Over the past fifteen years, he was also strategic advisor for several start-up companies. In 1999, he co-founded Scenario Management International (ScMI AG) in Germany where he served three years as CEO.

Dr. Schlake is an award-winning keynote speaker, executive trainer, strategy facilitator and speaker. His thought-after executive workshops are highly experiential and experimental. Recently, he has been awarded a development grant for a product development class that takes students and executives "out in the wild" to test prototypes of outdoor gear. Another class helps students develop new business models using drones (UAV's). He speaks frequently to executive groups around the world on topics such as "The Future of Innovation", "Managing Change", "Testing your Business Strategy", "Planning under Uncertainty", "Creativity for Business Leaders" and "Reading the Future".

Dr. Schlake is frequently asked to coach executive groups in both commercial (most recently with Under Armour, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, University of Maryland Medical System) and government entities (IRS, Customs and Border Protection, Dept. of Veteran Affairs, US Navy and NSA), how to infuse innovative thinking into their business processes and to use creative problem solving to create sustainable advantage.

As a futurist and former product developer, he continuously tracks emerging technologies, business and social trends throughout the world to spot new business opportunities for entrepreneurs and gauge the strategic impact of them for established organizations.

Contact us to work with Oliver Schlake, Ph.D.