• Business School Perceptions of the Possible Impact of the Teaching Excellence Framework: A Complex Adaptive Systems Perspective.

      Wall, Tony; Maheshwari, Vish; Jodlowski, Tadzio R. (University of Chester, 2019-07-23)
      The implementation of the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) at institutional level 2017, presents universities with the challenge of responding to a government policy which has the capacity to change the Higher Education landscape. Educational policies are capable of introducing complexity into organisations and inspiring disruptive behaviour. The strategic response to policy implementation within universities is often thought to be the domain of business schools due to their assumed autonomy and links to management. The responses of business schools towards policy implementation have not been previously explored. Therefore, the research explores the response of business schools towards the Institutional level TEF as well as wider policy changes, within the context of an assumed sense of autonomy. An interpretivist research methodology was chosen in order to explore business school responses towards the voluntary participation of the TEF in 2017 through interviews with respondents from universities across the country. This includes analysis of sense making from respondents as they drawing upon their respective knowledge networks. Qualitative research was utilised in order to explore the response from business schools and increase the understanding of policy response within the Higher Education sector. The research utilised purposive sampling followed by the use of snowball sampling. Complex Adaptive Systems theory was used a theoretical lens, and the data was explored though the use of thematic analysis which examined cluster formations in NVivo and identified patterns of data emerging into four main CAS areas. The findings suggest that business school responses towards the Institutional Level TEF in 2017 represents a moment in time when participating universities found themselves responding to an educational policy which contained an evolutionary element, capable of introducing change into the existing order - thus providing an example of punctuated equilibrium. The response to the TEF was hierarchical, and involved individuals reporting to their respective Vice Chancellors, while receiving support from self-regulating groups. The TEF is identified as a Complex Adaptive System due to its none-linear and unpredictable behaviour. Finally, Zimmerman’s Zone of Complexity is utilised in order to illustrate the manner in which the Edge of Chaos is capable of representing an opportunity for innovative though, when the decision is made to alternate between managerial clockware and innovative swarmware
    • The MBA Student and CSR: A Case Study from a European Business School  

      Manning, Paul; University of Chester (Emerald Publishing Limited, 2018-07-19)
      Purpose The purpose of this chapter is to develop a deeper understanding of the CSR perspectives of MBA in the European context. The chapter will review literature from the US and Europe focused on business school ethics and the CSR. The chapter will then present the findings generated from research into MBA students’ ethics and CSR from a European business school research site. Methodology This was inductive research, and data was collected with qualitative semi-structured interviews. The research population was purposely selected from two cohorts of MBA students, one comprising P/T, the other F/T students. Findings The research confirmed that there are broad similarities between the US and Europe, in terms of a students’ experiences of business school scholarship and pedagogy. The research also confirmed however, that these European based students wanted a greater focus on CSR, for instance in terms of addressing the relationship between business and the environment, which students do not consider is adequately addressed in their programmes. Furthermore, and reflecting US experience, students reported at the completion of the MBA that they were conscious that they had become more focused on their individual ‘rational’ self-interest, with the goal of increasing their own material success. Not all of these students were content with this change, but they reported that it had been embedded within them, as a consequence of studying for an MBA. Social Implication US based research, and this example from the European context both point to the conclusion that there is dominant instrumental paradigm in HE business and management pedagogy. This paradigm needs to be challenged to restore society’s ethical and CSR expectations, and also to facilitate the moral education of more socially responsible MBA graduate managers. The research confirmed that students are very much in favour of CSR framed changes to the MBA programme Originality This chapter contributes to a developing research stream into MBA programmes and CSR in a European context.