Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo - Faculty & Research - Harvard Business School
Photo of Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo

Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo

Principal Associate

Dr Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo is a member of the Harvard Business School faculty at Professor Michael E. Porter’s Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness.  He holds a PhD in Applied Economics from the University of Minnesota and degrees in Engineering from Colorado State University and Escuela Colombiana de Ingenieria.  He is an Associate Professor at the School of Management of Universidad de los Andes in Colombia, and founder and former Director of the Center for Strategy and Competitiveness at the Universidad de los Andes.

Dr. Ramirez-Vallejo has been a Visiting Associate Professor at the Harvard Business School and Visiting Scholar at the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies and Visiting Scholar at the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Harvard University.  He worked previously at the Colombian Federation of Coffee Growers (FEDERACAFE) as Director of the competitiveness program. He was CEO of the National Development Bank in Colombia, FINDETER; Director General of the Irrigation and Land Improvement Institute and Director of Agricultural Planning of the country.  He also worked as an economist for the Inter-American Development Bank.

Cases and Teaching Materials
  1. Walmart: Navigating a Changing Retail Landscape

    Michael E. Porter and Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo

    As the largest company, by revenue, in the world, Walmart has been a lightning rod for criticism. However, in an attempt to stay ahead of traditional and digital retailers, and keep customers satisfied with evolving demands, the company is strengthening its competitive advantage by creating Shared Value. Current CEO, Doug McMillon outlines his strategy for fending off competition, navigating a challenging retail landscape, and positioning Walmart as a leading retailer for today and the future.

    Keywords: shared value; strategy; Retail industry; department stores; sustainability; social responsibility of business; Value Creation; Competitive Strategy; Corporate Social Responsibility and Impact; Retail Industry;


    Porter, Michael E., and Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo. "Walmart: Navigating a Changing Retail Landscape." Harvard Business School Case 717-474, March 2017. (Revised January 2018.)  View Details
  2. CVS Health: Redefining the Value Proposition

    Michael E. Porter, Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo and Alexandra Houghtalin

    This case explores how a company can use shared value as a lens to think about competition and strategy choices in a challenging and evolving industry. The case takes a historical look at the structure of the retail pharmacy industry and the changing nature of rivalry among competitors. The case examines how CVS was able to surpass the long-time industry leader, Walgreens, and highlights CVS Health's shift in strategy starting in the mid-2000s.

    Keywords: shared value; strategy; pharmacy; health care; Strategy; Competitive Strategy; Retail Industry; Pharmaceutical Industry; United States;


    Porter, Michael E., Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo, and Alexandra Houghtalin. "CVS Health: Redefining the Value Proposition." Harvard Business School Case 717-436, November 2016. (Revised February 2017.)  View Details
  3. Yara International: Africa Strategy

    Michael E. Porter, Mark R. Kramer, Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo and Kerry Herman

    Leading fertilizer producer Yara International demonstrates the concept of creating shared value through the Southern Agricultural Corridor of Tanzania (SAGCOT) initiative, which brought together multiple organizations to enhance agricultural development in rural regions.

    Keywords: shared value; Tanzania; agriculture reform; Value Creation; Plant-Based Agribusiness; Agriculture and Agribusiness Industry; Chemical Industry; Tanzania;


    Porter, Michael E., Mark R. Kramer, Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo, and Kerry Herman. "Yara International: Africa Strategy." Harvard Business School Case 715-402, December 2014. (Revised January 2018.)  View Details
  4. New York City: Bloomberg's Strategy for Economic Development

    Michael E. Porter, Christian H.M. Ketels and Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo

    Traces the economic development of New York City from its founding in the 17th century through 2012. Focuses on the decisions made by New York City officials, past and present, highlighting the challenges of economic development at the city level. Enables deep examination of the interdependence and interrelation of economic policies at the city, state, and federal level and explores the role of economic and cluster performance. Detailed historical economic and social data allow for an evaluation of policy results. The case finishes highlighting the main economic challenges the city was facing in 2012.

    Keywords: History; Development Economics; Industry Clusters; Policy; Government Administration; Financial Crisis; Growth and Development Strategy;


    Porter, Michael E., Christian H.M. Ketels, and Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo. "New York City: Bloomberg's Strategy for Economic Development." Harvard Business School Case 714-404, July 2013. (Revised September 2013.)  View Details
  5. The New Carolina Initiative

    Michael E. Porter and Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo

    The New Carolina Initiative case explores the process of fostering competitiveness in the subnational region, South Carolina, one of the poorest states in the United States. The case has been developed primarily for use in the course "Microeconomics of Competitiveness," developing the concept of organizations for competitiveness in a subnational region and the elements of constructing an economic strategy. The case also outlines the adopted cluster vision of development for the state and the various task forces created to upgrade the business environment of the state. South Carolina's Council on Competitiveness, New Carolina, is an organization with significant capacity to mobilize regional actors in various task forces and cluster initiatives. Showcasing the complexity and organizational challenges of building a competitiveness initiative, the case emphasizes the importance of engagement from both private and public sector representatives. The case also provides an opportunity to discuss the competitive position of the South Carolina economy in 2011.

    Keywords: Public Sector; Poverty; Competitive Strategy; Private Sector; Economic Growth; South Carolina;


    Porter, Michael E., and Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo. "The New Carolina Initiative." Harvard Business School Case 713-462, January 2013. (Revised November 2016.)  View Details
  6. Colombia: Organizing for Competitiveness

    Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo and Michael E. Porter

    The case is designed to explore the process of building competitiveness, particularly in an unstable environment, with a focus on organizing for competitiveness.

    Keywords: Microeconomics; Industry Clusters; Competition; Competitive Strategy; Colombia;


    Ramirez-Vallejo, Jorge, and Michael E. Porter. "Colombia: Organizing for Competitiveness." Harvard Business School Case 710-417, September 2009. (Revised August 2013.)  View Details
  7. The Dutch Flower Cluster

    Michael E. Porter, Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo and Fred van Eenennaam

    Describes the Dutch Flower cluster, or the group of interconnected growers, suppliers, service providers, and flower-related institutions located in The Netherlands. Examines the role of the FloraHolland auction in the value chain. Also describes the flower clusters in China, Colombia, Ecuador, and Kenya, the four other major international competitors.

    Keywords: Globalization; Auctions; Industry Clusters; Competition; Competitive Advantage; Agriculture and Agribusiness Industry; Netherlands;


    Porter, Michael E., Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo, and Fred van Eenennaam. "The Dutch Flower Cluster." Harvard Business School Case 711-507, March 2011. (Revised November 2013.)  View Details