Quick Links

Expanding the Field: Nike’s World Shoe Project (A)

Company name

Heather McDonald and Ted London under the direction of Professor Stuart Hart

World Resources Institute

Access this case
Expanding the Field: Nike’s World Shoe Project (A)

Year published 

Last year covered in case 


The words “Just make me the shoe!” echoed down the boardroom table to Tom Hartge a 17- year veteran of the running shoe company, Nike, Inc. Tom Clarke, president of the company in 1998, had attended the meetings, seen the presentations and reviewed the numbers related to the market potential of China: a rough gem with a booming population of 1.2 billion. He also knew that in many parts of the world, including China, people couldn’t afford Nike’s current footwear products. Clarke didn’t want to listen to any more speeches. He wanted to hold in his hand a tangible prototype, a specialized shoe that could sell in an emerging economy. Nike’s challenge was to .expand the playing field. with a range of affordable, durable, and easy-to-produce sport shoes. So with this command, Hartge, Director of Emerging Market Footwear, teamed up with long-time shoe designer Alex Gajowskyj, and in early 1998 began the development of the World Shoe Project, a footwear line exclusively intended for emerging markets in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. 

Teaching note

Key Management Reading

  • Ambec, S. & Lanoie, P. (2008). Does it pay to be green? A systematic overview. Academy of Management Perspectives. 45-62
  • Reinhardt, F. (1999). Bringing the Environment Down to Earth. Harvard Business Review. July; 149-157 

    Other Readings

    • N/A

    Audio/Visual Material

    • N/A 

    Discussion Questions

    • N/A 

        Green Chemistry Principle

        • Principle 1 Prevention
        • Principle 5 Safer Solvents and Auxiliaries

        Textiles and Fibres
        Consumer Products

        Teaching Topic
        Community development/Economic development
        Corporate citizenship
        Environmental issues
        Global/Transnational issues
        Social Marketing

        Management Discipline
        Business, government and society
        Organizational behavior

        Business Logic
        Product differentiation
        Cost reduction|
        Relations with external stakeholders

        Environmental Issue

        North America
        Latin America

        Self Identified as Green Chemistry?

          Connect with the Desautels Faculty of Management

          Desautels Faculty of Management at McGill on FacebookDesautels Faculty of Management at McGill on TwitterFollow the Desautels Faculty of Management University page on LinkedInDesautels Faculty of Management at McGill, BCom Program on LinkedInDesautels Faculty of Management at McGill, MBA Program on LinkedInDesautels Faculty of Management at McGill on YouTubeDesautels Faculty of Management at McGill on Facebook

          Research at the Desautels Faculty of Management

          Accounting at Desautels Faculty of ManagementFinance at Desautels Faculty of ManagementInformation Systems at Desautels Faculty of ManagementMarketing at Desautels Faculty of ManagementOperations Management at Desautels Faculty of ManagementOrganizational Behaviour at Desautels Faculty of ManagementStrategy and Organization at Desautels Faculty of ManagementHealth Care at Desautels Faculty of Management