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Edited by Giovanni Battista Dagnino
Chapter 26: Competitive Strategy Research’s Impact on Practice
Constantinos Markides INTRODUCTION More books on strategy are written and more journals are now dedicated to strategy research than ever before. Yet, all this output seems to fall on deaf ears. In a survey of 220 senior executives from 28 countries carried out at London Business School in 2006, more than 55 percent told us that they “almost never” read articles published in major managerial journals such as HBR and more than 82 percent claimed to “rarely if ever” implement what they read in books or journals. More than 90 percent said that they do not understand the papers published in the main strategy journal (SMJ) and more than half suggested that they spend less than 20 minutes on any given (business) book. Why is the diffusion of ideas so low in the strategy field? Several possible answers have been proposed to us, such as: (a) the diffusion of ideas in strategy does not take place through books or journal articles but through classroom teaching; (b) the recipients of this new knowledge (the managers) do not need this knowledge to make informed decisions; (c) new knowledge in strategy gets incorporated in how managers think about issues rather than as tools or practices that are visible to outside observers; and so on. Even though all these reasons make sense, we aim to explore another one in this chapter. Specifically, we will argue that the ‘product’ itself (that is, ideas and knowledge on strategy) is not of high enough quality for consumers...
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