Evaluative Practices in Qualitative Management Research: A Critical Review

21 Pages Posted: 18 Jan 2018

See all articles by Gillian Symon

Gillian Symon

University of London - Management

Catherine Cassell

University of Birmingham - Birmingham Business School

Phil Johnson

University of Sheffield - School of Management

Date Written: January 2018

Abstract

This paper critically reviews commentaries on the evaluation and promotion of qualitative management research. The review identifies two disjunctures: between methodological prescriptions for epistemologically diverse criteria and management journal prescriptions for standardized criteria; and between the culturally dependent production of criteria and their positioning in editorials and commentaries as normative and objective. The authors’ critical social constructionist analysis surfaces underlying positivist assumptions and institutional processes in these commentaries, which they argue are producing (inappropriate) homogeneous evaluation criteria for qualitative research, marginalizing alternative perspectives, and disciplining individual qualitative researchers into particular normative practices. The authors argue that interventions to encourage more qualitative research need to focus as much on editorial, disciplinary and institutional practices as the practices of individual researchers, and they make recommendations for changes that may allow qualitative management research to develop in a more supportive context by recognizing philosophical diversity as legitimate.

Suggested Citation

Symon, Gillian and Cassell, Catherine and Johnson, Phil, Evaluative Practices in Qualitative Management Research: A Critical Review (January 2018). International Journal of Management Reviews, Vol. 20, Issue 1, pp. 134-154, 2018. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3104240 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ijmr.12120

Gillian Symon (Contact Author)

University of London - Management ( email )

London, WC1E 7HX
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.bbk.ac.uk/manop/orgpsychology/staff/symon/symon.shtml

Catherine Cassell

University of Birmingham - Birmingham Business School ( email )

Edgbaston Park Road
Birmingham, B15 2TY
United Kingdom

Phil Johnson

University of Sheffield - School of Management ( email )

9 Mappin Street
Sheffield, S1 4DT
United Kingdom

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