The MBA at the crossroads: Design issues for the future

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Journal Article
Journal of Management and Organization, 2003, 9 (3), pp. 25 - 36
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How appropriate is the MBA as the major vehicle for management education in Australia as we enter this new century? This question is explored from two perspectives. First, the implications of the changing social, economic and political context of management education, particularly the emerging needs for a sustainable and reflexive society. The second perspective will explore the recent debates around epistemology and their potentially important implications for related curriculum design issues. Assumptions about the nature of knowledge dominant in the 1960s formed the very rationale behind the design. At this time the assumption that knowledge was cumulative and each discipline had an uncontested knowledge, which could be taught in foundational subjects was central to the MBA's development. We question the ability of such subjects to capture the diversity of the disciplines they seek to represent and whether this design is the best way to develop graduates with the ability for reflexivity in action, who can broach different worldviews and have the skills that can negotiate the transformations required of corporate Australia. The MBA is at the crossroads - can it regenerate through an incremental changing of curricula, to incorporate the active engagement of students with these issues?.
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