In Research, The Focus Should Be On Rigour And Relevance: Dr. V Kumar, Georgia State University

Event: 2nd AIM-AMA Sheth Foundation Doctoral Consortium, January 5-7, 2014
Session: Linking Academic Research To Business Practice
Speaker: Dr. V Kumar, Regents Professor; Richard and Susan Lenny Distinguished Chair Professor in Marketing, Georgia State University

Dr. Kumar starts his presentation by telling the audience how his journey in research started and why data is important for research. To bring out the importance of data, Dr. Kumar  mentions that it was the promise of availability of ‘lots of data’ that helped him make the decision to take up his first job at the University of Iowa and start his journey in research.

According to him, in research the focus should be on rigour and relevance.

Rigour because it provides maximum accuracy. Stressing upon the importance of rigour, he lists three initiatives that they have started to help researchers achieve rigour – marketing strategy meets Wall Street, JMR’s special issue in theory and practice in marketing and arranging conferences on the subject in association with MSI. To help the audience achieve rigour in their research initiatives, Dr. Kumar lists the relevant sources of rigour like – theoretical, empirical or analytical contributions of decision theories. He asserts that the main problem faced by researchers – that of selecting the right customer- can be to a certain extent resolved with the help of these models. In addition, researchers can also refer to interdisciplinary research papers and hold discussions with colleagues.

Furthering the discussion on key focus areas of research, Dr. Kumar says that though the articles published in marketing journals today are excellently executed and presented they lack relevance. To achieve relevance, he suggests researchers should approach companies and interact with managers who are the end users of the research outcome.

Throughout the presentation, Dr. Kumar provides examples of real life case studies to explain various research methods.