Visiting Professor

Thomas Hout
McCone Building

Professor Hout is a visiting professor from Cambridge, Massachusetts, where he is an international strategy consultant and adjunct senior lecturer at the Fletcher School at Tufts. He also teaches every year at the University of Hong Kong School of Business. At the Institute, he teaches courses in global business strategy, lean startup methods, and international business consulting. 

Before teaching, he was a partner at The Boston Consulting Group for 22 years and lived and worked in Boston, London, Hong Kong, and Tokyo. He co-founded the firm’s Operations practice area. At the Institute, he supervises student international business plan projects. He has published eight articles in The Harvard Business Review on subjects ranging from global industrial competition to fast operating cycles to leading-edge management practices to industrial competition between China and the West. In addition, he has written over a dozen op-ed pieces in The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times on international business. He is co-author of two books, Japan’s Industrial Strategy and Competing Against Time, the latter of which was a business best seller in the 1990s with over 100,000 copies sold in eight languages. 

He was a reserve officer in the US Navy and is a Vietnam Veteran.

Areas of Interest

Professor Hout’s current research interests are China and global industrial competition. He has taught executive education at Harvard Business School and served on HBS Publishing’s Board of Editorial Review.

Academic Degrees

  • MBA from Stanford University
  • BA in Economics from Yale University

Professor Hout has been teaching at the Institute since 2012.



  • Competing Against Time, co-authored with George Stalk, 1990.
  • Japanese Industrial Policy, co-authored with Ira Magaziner, 1980.

Harvard Business Review

  • “A Chinese Approach to Management”, co-authored with David Michael, September 2014.
  • “China Versus the World: Whose Technology Is It?” co-authored with Pankaj Ghemawat, December 2010.
  • “Tomorrow’s Global Giants”, co-authored with Pankaj Ghemawat, Nov 2008.
  • “Are Managers Obsolete?” Mar/April 1999.
  • “Getting It Done: New Roles for Senior Managers”, Nov/Dec 1995.
  • “The Fallacy of the Quick Overhead Fix”, co-authored with Mark Blaxill, Jul/Aug 1991.
  • “Fast Cycle Capability for Competitive Power”, co-authored Joe Bower, Nov/Dec 1988.
  • “How Global Companies Win Out”, co-authored with Michael E. Porter, Sept/Oct 1982.

Foreign Affairs

  • “Facing Up to the Trade Gap with Japan”, co-authored with James Abegglen, Fall 1978.

Professor Hout’s op-ed pieces have appeared in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Asia Wall Street Journal, and Boston Globe.