Promoting Scholarship that Matters: The Uselessness of Useful Research and the Usefulness of Useless Research

10 Pages Posted: 14 Feb 2012

See all articles by Mark Learmonth

Mark Learmonth

Durham University

Andy Lockett

Nottingham University Business School (NUBS)

Kevin Dowd

Nottingham University Business School (NUBS)

Date Written: March 2012

Abstract

Our ambition in this essay is to challenge received wisdoms about the importance of ‘useful’ management scholarship. Suggesting that usefulness and uselessness are contingent on issues of temporality and power, we advocate caution in assigning terms such as useful and relevant – they are inherently problematic, we argue, and should be viewed more as ideology than as empirical statements. We conclude by a call for reflexivity about what it is we are doing when we do ‘useful’ research, along with a greater concern for the values for which business schools stand.

Suggested Citation

Learmonth, Mark and Lockett, Andy and Dowd, Kevin, Promoting Scholarship that Matters: The Uselessness of Useful Research and the Usefulness of Useless Research (March 2012). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2004840 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8551.2011.00754.x

Mark Learmonth

Durham University ( email )

Old Elvet
Mill Hill Lane
Durham, Durham DH1 3HP
United Kingdom

Andy Lockett (Contact Author)

Nottingham University Business School (NUBS) ( email )

Jubilee Campus
Wollaton Road
Nottingham, NG8 1BB
United Kingdom

Kevin Dowd

Nottingham University Business School (NUBS) ( email )

Jubilee Campus
Wollaton Road
Nottingham, NG8 1BB
United Kingdom

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