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Legitimating irrelevance: management education in higher education institutions

David Crowther (University of North London, London, UK)
Chris Carter (University of St Andrews, Fife, UK)

International Journal of Educational Management

ISSN: 0951-354X

Article publication date: 1 November 2002



Argues that the subject matter involved in the process of knowledge transfer needs also to be an integral part of the discourse and that this consideration is of particular relevance within the business school community of higher education. Further argues that the development of the subject matter taught is in danger of becoming irrelevant to the needs of the customers purported to be served and, hence, at best marginalised and at worst excluded, from the discourse of education. States that the trend in management teaching and research to increased specialism and self‐referential legitimation is ultimately self‐defeating because the needs of the customers involved are changing from specialisation to generalisation. Concludes that, consequently, academics in the management metadiscipline are in fact legitimating their own irrelevance and marginalisation and that the discourse of teaching management subjects needs to include not just academics, and their needs and desires, but also those of their customers.



Crowther, D. and Carter, C. (2002), "Legitimating irrelevance: management education in higher education institutions", International Journal of Educational Management, Vol. 16 No. 6, pp. 268-278.




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