Purpose: The growing involvement of management researchers in knowledge exchange activities and collaborative research does not seem to be reflected in a growing academic output. The purpose of this paper is to explore barriers for the limited academic output from these activities as well as the potential for ‘interesting’ papers. Design/methodology/approach: The paper uses secondary data and statistics as well as an illustrative case study to trace knowledge exchange activities and barriers for academic output based on these activities. Findings: The paper identifies a number of barriers for the turning of data derived from knowledge exchange activities into academic papers such as low priority of case study research in leading management journals, a growing practice orientation in the research funding systems, methodological challenges because of limited researcher control and disincentives for researcher involvement in knowledge exchange activities. The paper also identifies a potential for ‘interesting’ research and discoveries through collaborative research. Research limitations/implications: Diminishing the barriers for collaborative and case-based research and exploring the potential for ‘interesting’ discoveries has the potential to increase the number of published papers with a high level of scientific rigor as well as a high level of relevance for practice. Originality/value: An outcome focus on the relationship between knowledge exchange activities and management research is to the author’s knowledge new in the debate about weak practical relevance of management research.
- Knowledge exchange, management research, barriers, relevance debate, interesting research, discoveries