Loughborough University
JMD The Unfulfilled Promise of Management Education FINAL 13 Feb 2013.pdf (271.99 kB)

The unfulfilled promise of management education (ME): The role, value and purposes of ME

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journal contribution
posted on 2015-08-21, 14:17 authored by Howard Thomas, Lynne Thomas, Alex Wilson
Purpose: This paper aims to review the evolution of management education primarily over the last 50 years and seeks to identify the challenges and lessons learned in management education and to assess the potential for change. To gain insight into these issues the authors draw on the perspectives of around 40 key individuals from academia, professional bodies, media, business and students. Design/methodology/approach: The content of the paper is based upon a qualitative analysis of around 40 two-to-three hour interviews of key global players in the management education field. Findings: The key stakeholders in management education are identified as students, business and employers respectively. But in terms of relative stakeholder influence faculty, business and students are the top three influencers. Faculty represent the supply-side whereas business and students represent the demand side of management education. There is evidence that higher tuition fees may increase the power of students and business relative to faculty. The individuals who have had the greatest influence on management education are academics such as Mintzberg and Drucker rather than business school deans or administrators. Institutions such as INSEAD, IMD and Harvard have had the greatest influence. The main issues and challenges identified in Management Education include information technology, globalisation, the role of faculty, competition and business model performance. Few game changing innovations in curricula have occurred in management education raising the question of how change will occur in the future. Originality/value: There are few in-depth, open-ended interview studies of key participants in the field of management education. It adds insights to a range of more reflective literature studies from writers such as Khurana, Mintzberg and Pfeffer.


The authors would like to acknowledge EFMD for their support in conducting this research.



  • Business and Economics


  • Business

Published in

Journal of Management Development






460 - 476


THOMAS, H., THOMAS, L. and WILSON A.D., 2013. The unfulfilled promise of management education (ME): The role, value and purposes of ME. Journal of Management Development, 32 (5), pp. 460 - 476


© Emerald


  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

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