The possibility to fail is inherent to entrepreneurial existence. The risk of a system – a company losing stability increases especially in economic crisis as well as in times of social change. Is it possible for companies to develop their own ‘immunity’ which would make it easier to minimize these risks? This paper examines German breweries during the structural change after ‘the boom’. First, the theory of resilience, here in the sense of crisis robustness, is critically analysed and the value for business research considered. Although the term ‘resilience’ was not used by contemporaries, it was, however, an already established concept of action, based on the interaction between anticipatory preparedness and situational flexibility.
© 2016 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston