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The past masters: the impact of the Evolution of Management Thought on history

Jeffrey Muldoon (Emporia State University School of Business, Emporia, Kansas, USA)
Nicholous M. Deal (Mount Saint Vincent University, Halifax, Canada)
Douglass Smith (Emporia State University School of Business, Emporia, Kansas, USA)
Geethalakshmi Shivanapura Lakshmikanth (Emporia State University School of Business, Emporia, Kansas, USA)

Journal of Management History

ISSN: 1751-1348

Article publication date: 20 January 2022

Issue publication date: 16 January 2023

243

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Evolution of Management Thought (EMT), a critically acclaimed text in management and organizational studies for its value in historicizing the practice of management.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors asked Daniel Wren and Arthur Bedeian in their own words to their contribution. In addition, the authors offer commentary and critique of 16 leading management historians who share their reflections on the intellectual significance of Wren and Bedeian, and the punctuation of EMT as a canonical text in the field of management history.

Findings

The legacy of Wren and Bedeian can be felt across the academy of historical research on business and organizations. Their work has separately made significant contributions to management studies but together they have forged a fruitful partnership that has given rise to multiple generations of scholars and scholarship that continue to shape the field to this day.

Originality/value

The contribution of the authors in this article is to mark the significant milestone of EMT’s five-decade success by hearing from the authors themselves about their longstanding success as well as giving space to critique about the past, present and future of our collective historical scholarship shaped by Wren and Bedeian’s legacy.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Authors would like to thank Prof. Wren and Bedeian for their helpful comments. Authors would also like to thank the 16 scholars who added their comments.

Citation

Muldoon, J., Deal, N.M., Smith, D. and Shivanapura Lakshmikanth, G. (2023), "The past masters: the impact of the Evolution of Management Thought on history", Journal of Management History, Vol. 29 No. 1, pp. 10-28. https://doi.org/10.1108/JMH-10-2021-0057

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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