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Jagdish N. Sheth: reflections of an accidental scholar

Jagdish Sheth (Goizueta Business School, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, USA)

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing

ISSN: 1755-750X

Article publication date: 22 May 2019

Issue publication date: 30 September 2019




The aim of this paper is to demonstrate that scholarship is all about challenging the prevailing wisdom by offering an alternative perspective or explanation. Hopefully, the author’s journey of more than 50 years will inspire others to be eclectic and become deep generalists.


It is an autobiographical evaluation of an accidental scholar. It emphasizes that an educator is more than a scientist or a priest or a public servant. It is all of them. Educators are in the business of making ordinary people extraordinary. They are diamond cutters who are entrusted by society with its rough diamonds to get their brilliance out and make them useful to themselves, the society and the community.


Over 50 years, marketing has evolved and adapted to the external environment, including technology revolution, changing demographics, global competition and geopolitics. This provides enormous opportunity for the next generation of scholars to establish their own identity in managerial marketing, consumer behavior or marketing analytics.

Practical implications

While publishing in the top journals is both necessary and desirable in the early stages of an academic career, it is also important to make an impact on practitioners by publishing professional books.

Social implications

According to Peter Drucker, there are only two functions of business: innovation and marketing. While innovation is admired by everyone, marketing can also become a positive force for a better world.


Lessons learnt over time from different encounters and circumstances in research, teaching and service are important to document. In the end, according to the author, they are all academic entrepreneurs.



Sheth, J. (2019), "Jagdish N. Sheth: reflections of an accidental scholar", Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, Vol. 11 No. 4, pp. 407-420.



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Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited

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