Position Paper

Executive Summary

This position paper presents a vision of a future in which business schools and scholars worldwide have successfully transformed their research toward responsible science, producing useful and credible knowledge that addresses problems important to business and society. This vision is based on the belief that business can be a means for a better world if it is informed by responsible research. The paper begins with a set of principles to support responsible research and proposes actions by different stakeholders to help realize this vision. It explains the impetus for the proposal by describing the current business research ecosystem, which encourages research oriented toward scholarly impact much more than societal relevance. Changing the incentives and culture around publications are essential to promoting responsible research. Research is the foundation of business education and practice, yet business research has failed to live up to its promise in promoting better policies and best practices. If nothing is done, business research will lose its legitimacy at best; at worst, it will waste money, talent, and opportunity. This paper ends with a call to action for directing research toward achieving humanity’s highest aspirations. The paper invites discussion and debate on the prospect of creating a responsible research ecosystem to realise this future vision when business and management research has become a force for change toward a better world. read more on this section

Vision 2030

In 2030, business and management schools worldwide are widely admired for their contributions to societal well-being. Research is timely and cutting edge, producing well-grounded knowledge on pressing problems. read more on this section


Business schools around the world are home to some of the most brilliant and well-supported scholars in all of the social sciences. Research feeds knowledge to business education, yet currently, research is often disconnected from real-world challenges. read more on this section

Principles of Responsible Research

What would it take to achieve Vision 2030? The following seven principles support responsible research that will help in realizing this vision. These principles can guide business and management research to build a sound body of knowledge that serves society. read more on this section

Possible Action

Acting on these principles of responsible research requires a revision of criteria, processes and incentive systems at all levels: individual faculty, journals, and schools. Proclaiming principles is not sufficient: we need to modify the ecosystem of research so that individual researchers are rewarded for making progress toward the achievement of our higher goals. read more on this section

The Current Business School Research Ecosystem

Why is the above proposal necessary? What led to the desire to introduce an initiative for responsible research in business and management? The impetus came from witnessing a broad crisis of credibility in science today. read more on this section


The current system is falling short of fulfilling our collective potential. The goal for researchers and their institutions should include business and societal impact, not simply to publish in a small set of journals with limited readership. The results of research are an important input into the curriculum and are the basis for informing public policies and advising best practices. Responsible research feeds into responsible teaching and preparation of responsible managers, but our current ecosystem is reinforcing research that is narrow, outdated and insulated from the real world. We encourage increasing the diversity of topics, methods, disciplinary perspectives, assumptions, contexts, and dissemination methods. Diversity should be a central part of our research vision, with societal impact as a central goal of responsible research. The research ecosystem has a web of interrelated players. Each has a role to play in encouraging and supporting efforts to move the current citation-based publication-oriented ecosystem to one that supports the principles associated with responsible research. Complementary and coordinated actions involving all players in the ecosystem are necessary to reach Vision 2030.  read more on this section