Fifty years of irrelevance: The wild goose chase of management science

Lauri Koskela

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: to begin to understand the reasons for the spectacular failure of management research to create relevant results in the period 1960-2010. Research Questions: How relevant is management science/management research? How was the 1959 change of direction in management science to social science justified and achieved? Which correctives have been proposed for management research? What can be said about the reasons for irrelevance of management research? Research Method: Literature study Findings: the ousting of production from management science in 1959 seems to have been a major contributing factor to irrelevance across managerial sub-disciplines. The two 1959 reports (by Pierson and Gordon & Howell) on the future of business education failed to give appropriate direction for management research; in spite of extensive (although somewhat myopic) discussion on irrelevance in the management scholar community from circa 1980 onwards, there has been little corrective action. Limitations: this is a broad brush examination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalLean Construction Journal
Issue numberSpecial Issue
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2011
Externally publishedYes


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