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All aboard? evidence-based management and the future of management scholarship

Barzelay, Michael and Thompson, Fred (2009) All aboard? evidence-based management and the future of management scholarship. International Public Management Journal, 12 (3). pp. 289-309. ISSN 1096-7494

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Identification Number: 10.1080/10967490903094087


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, a search for a different response to the same concerns is 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.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2009 Taylor & Francis Group
Divisions: Government
Public Policy Group
Centre for Analysis of Risk & Regulation
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Date Deposited: 31 Jan 2011 14:50
Last Modified: 20 Jun 2021 00:14

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