eNEWSLINE - Business Education News from AACSB International

Chair's Exchange: Scholarly Research Drives Business Education

January 2015

By Linda A. Livingstone, Dean and Professor
School of Business, The George Washington University
Chair, AACSB Board of Directors

With an emphasis in the new accreditation standards on impact of research, reflecting on and improving the ways in which business academic research has impact is critical. Outside of the hard sciences, few disciplines bring their academic research directly into the classroom as much as in the business fields. Research drives advances not only in business education but more broadly contributes to the advancement of society.

We live in a world where technological, political, demographic, and institutional developments are constantly changing the landscape of global management practice. As educators, we have to think more strategically to ensure that our students are given the best preparation possible to compete—and lead—in that ever-changing world. One of the best ways to accomplish this is through cutting-edge research that is both rigorous and relevant to our mission, coupled with efforts to translate that academic research into positive outcomes for society.

That is why research is so vital—from an academic as well as a real-world standpoint. The scholarly research that forms the basis of business education also contributes to the creation of knowledge that improves the management and performance of organizations, with the impact felt both on campus and off.

Academic research informs the way we think about education and has changed the way firms do business, but work must continue on effectively linking the research we do with important outcomes in learning and practice. Academic research is a strategic part of the mission of AACSB, and the schools among our ranks are learning how to assess its impact. This is critical not only to enhance the educational enterprise and business practice but also to improve citizens’ well-being and to address critical societal issues.

The practical applications that academic research has contributed and the positive outcomes as a result are too numerous to outline here. However, these significant discoveries and analyses not only form the basis for business school curricula but are translated directly into practice by our members.

Business schools have an obligation to encourage and support research that impacts both learning and practice aimed at positive measurable outcomes. It is the key to effective business education—and to better business for a better world.

Linda A. Livingstone
Dean and Professor, School of Business, The George Washington University
Chair, AACSB
Board of Directors