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Restating the case: How revisiting the development of the case method can help us think differently about the future of the business school

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journal contribution
posted on 29.07.2020 by Todd Bridgman, Stephen Cummings, C McLaughlin
© Academy of Management Learning & Education. Although supportive of calls for business schools to learn the lessons of history to address contemporary challenges about their legitimacy and impact, we argue that our ability to learn is limited by the histories we have created. Through contrasting the contested development of the case method of teaching at Harvard Business School and the conventional history of its rise, we argue that this history, which promotes a smooth linear evolution, works against reconceptualizing the role of the business school. To illustrate this, we develop a "counterhistory" of the case method-one that reveals a contested and circuitous path of development-and discuss how recognizing this would encourage us to think differently. This counterhistory provides ameans of stimulating debate and innovative thinking about how business schools can address their legitimacy challenges, and, in doing so, have a more positive impact on society.

History

Preferred citation

Bridgman, T., Cummings, S. & McLaughlin, C. (2016). Restating the case: How revisiting the development of the case method can help us think differently about the future of the business school. Academy of Management Learning and Education, 15(4), 724-741. https://doi.org/10.5465/amle.2015.0291

Journal title

Academy of Management Learning and Education

Volume

15

Issue

4

Publication date

01/12/2016

Pagination

724-741

Publisher

Academy of Management

Publication status

Published

Contribution type

Article

Online publication date

22/09/2016

ISSN

1537-260X

eISSN

1944-9585

Language

en

Exports