Smooth Closing of Forum on Case-Based and Qualitative Research in Business Administration in China (2017)


On November 11th, 2017, Economics and Management School of Wuhan University observed a grand opening of Forum on Case-Based and Qualitative Research in Business Administration in China (2017), co-hosted by Business School, Renmin University of China and Management World, undertaken by Economics and Management School of Wuhan University. This forum is themed “Best Practice in Management and Theory Construction in ‘Double Creations’ Age”. It organized four speech conferences, three workshops, twelve sessions and seven round table discussions. 400 professors and scholars from more than 120 colleges and universities at home and abroad including Renmin University of China, Wuhan University, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Tsinghua University, Fudan University, Zhejiang Unviersity, Sun Yat-sen University and The Hong Kong Polytechnic University participated in the forum.

The Grand Opening of the Forum

The guests participating in the forum include JIANG Dongsheng, the former associate editor of Management World, SHANG Zengjian, associate editor and Director of the Editorial Department of Management World, DU Xiaocheng, Party Committee secretary of Economics and Management School of Wuhan University, PAN Min, executive dean of Economics and Management School of Wuhan University, MAO Jiye, dean of Business School, Renmin University of China and HUANG Jiangming, Party Committee secretary of Business School, Renmin University of China. On the morning of Nov. 11th, PAN Min declared the opening of the forum. DU Xiaocheng and SHANG Zengjian delievered opening speeches respectively.

Professor PAN Min

The Secretary DU Xiaocheng

Professor SHANG Zengjian

Some Top management scholars at home and abroad made excellent keynote speeches. Pratima (Tima) Bansal, professor at Ivey School of Business (Canada) and associate editor on qualitative research of Academy of Management Journal, top journal in management, made a speech themed “Qualitative research: New ways of Seeing Management and Business” and a report titled “Looking Under the Hood of Qualitative Research: From Idea to Publication”. Combined her research and editorship experiences, professor Bansal introduced publication situation of qualitative research in AMJ, discussed the essence of qualitative research and research methods creation of qualitative research. In her report, by taking an example of one of her research papers, she elaborated in detail the whole process of case study from topic selection to contribution to a top journal. Besides, she also summarized “Ten Traps on Qualitative Research” based on her review comments of more than 200 papers, providing authoritative and clear ameliorated orientation for Chinese scholars dedicated to case-based and qualitative research.

Professor Pratima (Tima) Bansal

Jason D. Shaw, editor of AMJ and professor of Faculty of Business, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, made a speech titled “The Spirit of Academic Craftsmanship”. Based on his editorship experience, Professor Shaw summarized main reasons of some papers being rejected which include being not in conformity with AMJ’s academic mission and having no elaborate paper design. He then suggested that the conferees should have craftsmanship spirit when writing papers. As how to cultivate craftsmanship spirit of academics, he proposed that scholars should explore the topic over and over again, keep a perfectionism attitude toward and pay high attention to the research and do rigorous research that conducive to the society. Professor Shaw also put forward “3C” in paper creation which are completeness, clarity and creditability.

Professor Jason D. Shaw

MAO Jiye, dean of Business School, Renmin University of China presented to the audience a speech titled “Model Essay Sharing of Multi-Case Study”. Professor MAO emphasized importance of extensive and intensive reading of model essays. He took an example of “Unbundling the Structure of Inertia: Resource versus Routine Rigidity”, one of the best papers from AMJ, and conducted the conferees to analyze the excellent aspects of the paper. Professor MAO then stressed importance of a good paper from three aspects: explanatory nature of appropriate theories, importance of topic selection, standardability and rigor of study methods. In the end, Professor Mao expressed gratitude towards all guests, scholars, co-host, undertaker and all responsible staff.

Professor MAO Jiye

Adhering to the mission of “Enterprise Insight and Theory Construction”, aiming to build a communication bridge to the academic field and the enterprises and also provide more academic perspectives for scholars, this forum invited Doctor Fan Feng, Board Chairman and CEO of Beijing Sootoo Internet Technology Co., Ltd. Through a speech “Corporate Marketing Communication at New Media Age” and four typical cases of Sootoo Internet, Fan elaborated his perspective that media is no longer information intermediary, but becoming engine of a corporate. He proposed that the essence of “internet +”of enterprises is enterprises mediumizing, providing a new perspective and train of thoughts.

Doctor Fan Feng

On the afternoon of Nov. 12th, WEI Tian, associate professor at Fudan Unviersity made a speech “‘Elaboration’ and ‘Dialogue’: How to Response to the Reviewer’s Comments in Qualitative Research”. Based on philosophical foundation of qualitative research methodology, Professor WEI divided qualitative research reviewers into two types: positivism and Interpretivism. Based on his abundant experience of paper publication, he also put forward the two different responsive strategies to different reviewers: ‘elaboration’ and ‘dialogue’.

Professor LI Ping from Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University, through a topic “Inherent Paradox of Case Study and Handling Mechanism” in workshop, by comparing case study with paradox study, elaborated their relationship and said the best solution for paradox is to find a balance.

Associate Professor WEI Tian

Professor LI Ping

Twelve sub-forums and seven round table discussions were also held, covering strategic management, innovation and entrepreneurship, organization and human resource, finance and accounting, industrial economy, information management, e-commerce and marketing, etc., providing the conferees with opportunities and stages for further communication. Different scholars made reports on different papers, displaying their research achievements and academic opinions and also exchanging ideas with conferees in Q&A part. To achieve better learning and exchanging effect, an experts commenting part is also arranged in the sub-forums. Experts on case study commented reports and papers in sub-forums and shared precious experience with the conferees.

Carrying on traditions of previous forums, research paper workshops are organized in the afternoon before the day of the official opening of this forum. Experts in case-study field were invited to comment on some submitted papers. In three parallel workshops, 9 experts commented on 19 reports and papers. On the afternoon of Nov. 11th, “A Dialogue with the Former Best-Paper Authors” was held. The five previous best-paper award winners, CHENG Cong from Zhejiang University of Technology, LIANG Qiang from Shantou University, LI Pengbo from Beijing International Studies University, CHNEG Jin from Xiamen University and LUO Shunjun from Sun Yat-sen University, combining their thoughts and experiences in case study and paper writing, shared experiences and exchanged ideas with the conferees.

A total of 186 papers were received from conferees for this forum. Those papers made them out of the first round of review were taken to a “two-way anonymous review” by 200 experts in related fields. Each paper must go through at least four experts’ review and no more than two comments were collected. An anthology of 89 papers were finalized with an acceptance rate of 47.8%, of which includes 35 papers from sub-forums with an acceptance rate of 18.8%. Based on this result, 7 best papers, 2 best reviewers were selected. On the morning of Nov. 12th, HUANG Jiangming, Party Secretary of Business School, Renmin University of China, briefed review process, the best papers and the best reviewers of this forum.

Party Secretary HUANG Jiangming

7 papers include “Improvisation, Resource patchwork and Logic Reform of Enterprise System----A Case Study of Greely acquisition of Volvo” authored by CHENG Cong from Zhejiang University of Technology were awarded “Best Paper”. LIU Yang from South China University of Technology and CHEN Cheng from Renmin University of China were awarded “Best Reviewer”. MAO Jiye, dean of Business School, Renmin University of China and SHANG Zengjian, associate editor and Director of the Editorial Department of Management World, presented respectively the trophies to the Best-Paper authors and Best-Reviewer winners.

The Best-Paper Authors and Award Presenter

The Best-Reviewer Winners and Dean MAO Jiye

On the afternoon of Nov.12th, this forum having completed all established schedule, closed smoothly. The conferees exchanged their academic ideas and benefited a lot from the forum. They all expressed their expectation toward the next forum and also gave many constructive suggestions and extended their best wishes to the host.
Forum on Case-Based and Qualitative Research in Business Administration in China has a history of 11 years. Last year marked the tenth anniversary of the foundation of the Forum and a celebration conference was held. To positively advocate and promote models of case study and qualitative research, the Forum has gone out of Beijing in recent years and expanded influence of case study and qualitative research. The Forum 2017 received nearly the same number of papers with that in 2016 and all papers are dedicated to research cases. Compared with 96 research cases in 2008, it increases almost 100%, which indicates case study and qualitative research as a scientific research method and a model of theory construction has been accepted widely throughout the country. Forum on Case-Based and Qualitative Research in Business Administration in China has become the most authoritative and most influential forum in its field in China. It’s greatly promoted the popularization and improvement of case study in China.

(Reported by QI Hailun, WANG Bing, MA Chong, ZHONG Xiaohao, ZHU Xiaolin, CHEN Cheng and LI Liwang.)

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