Beyond Rigour and Relevance: The Underlying Nature of Both Business Schools and Management Research
Advanced Institute of Management Research Paper No. 051
53 Pages Posted: 1 Dec 2008
Date Written: January 1, 2007
This paper aims to develop further the common distinction that is made between rigour and relevance in management research. The debates around this issue have also been closely linked with the critique of Business Schools and in particular the nature of both their students and their teaching. A more critical look at not only the history of these issues but also the institutional nature of the Schools suggests that the underlying tensions are both more complex and also more intractable.
The range of challenges to management research not only in terms of relevance, but also in terms of interdisciplinarity and the nature of disciplinary rigour combine with additional issues about the nature of managerial knowledge and expertise and a wide range of stakeholders to produce a complex environment in which neither market forces nor institutional incentives will necessarily produce the desired outcomes.
However, a wider appreciation of the importance of overall engagement with the range of stakeholder groups and the continued importance of codification and teaching if combined with less of an overall focus on any single set of incentives and objectives is much more likely to aid the further development of management research.
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