Management theory and management practice are often accused of not belonging together. Likewise decision support systems (DSSs) appear to have failed in providing support for managerial decision-making. Some of the problems seem to come from the fact that academics and managers are ambitious people, successful in their own field, discussing the same issues, but speaking a different language, thus not understanding each other. It does not have to be like this. Here we will describe how we discovered the differences between theory and practice when developing a DSS to support strategic decision—making in a drug company. It is possible to represent the key elements and their relationships of strategic management in a DSS so that they will make sense to the decision-maker. It is, however, the kind of work where we have to rush slowly if we wish to achieve good results. © 1994 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.