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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2003, MCB UP Limited
Mike Bourne Mike Kennerley and Pippa Bourne
Dr Mike Bourne and Dr Mike Kennerley are with the Centre for Business Performance at Cranfield School of Management. Pippa Bourne manages the East England region of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.
With the re-branding of Measuring Business Excellence under the Management First stable, the journal will be taking a new direction. The intention is to create a high quality journal that is close to practice but also reflects the developments that are happening in academia. By doing this we hope to present the very latest developments in performance measurement and management.
Taking an historical perspective, most of the frameworks and tools we use in corporate performance management had their origins in industry. Cost accounting was developed in the late 1800s by mills trying to manage multiple process production and an hourly wage environment. Sophisticated budgeting emerged in du Pont and General Motors around 1900 as management struggled to control the first multi-divisional organizations. At the time, these techniques gave companies an advantage over their competitors.
Even in the last 20 years most developments are still coming from industry. The balanced scorecard operated in Analogue Devices by Art Schneiderman and others in the late 1980s was an innovative approach to overcome the financial myopia of the day. The "business models" developed by Eccles and Pyburn in their consulting practice are clearly the forerunner of the "strategy maps" or "success maps" promoted currently so widely in the literature. Although most of the ideas in corporate performance measurement and management come from practice, many of them have reached prominence through the contribution of academics who have distilled the essence of these techniques and packaged them in a way that is widely accessible to industrialists.
Therefore we intend to publish articles on "good practice" in performance measurement and management. We will present academic and practitioners, reflections on their experiences and observations of the field, interviews with knowledgeable and influential individuals as well as summaries of important pieces of research. We will be reviewing papers with these objectives in mind – searching for clarity of exposition, relevance to practice and contribution to our knowledge and understanding of the field. Our intention is to add to the Editorial Board to reflect this new direction and we shall be inviting colleagues to join the Editorial Board who are either academics working close to practice or practitioners who are abreast of the academic developments.
In the past, the adoption of performance measurement and management techniques has given some companies a competitive advantage over others. Today, with rapid communications, advances in this area cannot be kept a secret for very long. However, there is a world of difference between understanding a framework or technique and implementing it well in your business. It is our belief that companies who are doing performance measurement and management well are stealing a march on others.
We hope that this journal will keep you up to date with the latest developments so you are never too far behind the latest thinking. Also, we aim to present our knowledge in the context of application, giving you insights to better develop the performance and competitive position of your own organization.