Evidence-Based Management and the Future of Management Scholarship
20 Pages Posted: 2 Jul 2009
Date Written: June 30, 2009
The research-practice gap has emerged as an acute problem in management scholars' internal professional debates. Evidence-based management (EBM) has been proposed as a remedy, and it is gaining adherents. This article offers a critical examination of the EBM proposal and its justification. The proposal is found to be poorly conceived and justified. Therefore, search for a different response to the same concerns are in order. The direction of search is to understand how existing scholarly practices offer advice to actors in managerial roles. While advice-giving scholarly practices are diverse and disconnected, a commonality is that they define design issues and offer value- and knowledge-based argumentation schemes for resolving them. An alternative to EBM can be envisioned: to strengthen the management field's network of design-oriented approaches to advice-giving. By employing the unorthodox style of a dialogue, this article shows how common ground about EBM and its alternatives can be established among management scholars who identify with conflicting intellectual traditions.
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