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Marketing academics endeavor to conduct research that contributes to the development of cutting edge theories and ideas about marketing. At the same time, they try to incorporate these research findings into their classes through the application of theories to the practice of marketing. Even so, marketing scholarship comes under intermittent attack for being arcane and irrelevant for practitioners. To explore this disconnect between theory and practice, we review the evolution of scholarly research in marketing. We identify the various definitions of scholarship that have evolved as business schools have matured. We conclude that marketing academics must make scholarly contributions, variously defined, in order to maintain contact with the discipline. Our analysis is based on the views of two 60-year-old professors who completed their doctoral work in the early 1970s.


This article was published by the Marketing Management Association, and is available at: