Edited by Timothy Clark, Mike Wright and David J. Ketchen Jr.
Chapter 5: Sustaining a publications career
We live in a time of turbulence for academic researchers, perhaps especially so for those in management. Politicians question the benefits for business of encouraging management academics to publish in “obscure U.S. journals” (whether this means obscure European journals are acceptable or beyond the pale is left unsaid). Instead business school academics should offer more practical help to business. Pressures on internal resources from reductions in public funding and in income generated from executive education undermine budgets to support research. Sharply increased tuition fees for students shift the emphasis to delivering high quality teaching. At the same time, submissions to journals have been rising significantly in recent years as a result of a worldwide surge of research activity. With space in most journals remaining unchanged, acceptance rates have been falling sharply and now stand at around 5 percent for major management journals. Thresholds to get published have therefore increased, with reviewers and editors becoming more demanding (Clark et al., 2006, 2013). Publication in quality journals has, however, long been recognized to be highly skewed (e.g. Podsakoff et al., 2008); fewer scholars continue to publish in quality journals over a long period. These trends may mean that publications careers become even more highly skewed. Even though scholars may have published successfully already, they face demands for new skills and need both to be able to identify new opportunities and exploit them more efficiently if they are to sustain a publications career.
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