Leadership in the Academic Field of Business and Management and the Question of Country of Origin: A Commentary on Burgess and Shaw (2010)


  • We are grateful to the Editor-in-Chief Mustafa Özbilgin for encouraging us to undertake this research and commentary, and to Associate Editor Stella Nkomo and three anonymous reviewers for their insightful, helpful and encouraging comments. We are grateful to Thomas Burgess and Nicola Shaw for kindly providing their data set to us. Theirs is an example of academic collaboration that should serve as a model to our community. We would also like to thank Catherine Micolino, Johannes Kraak and Shay Tzafrir for their help in our empirical investigation.

Corresponding author email: Aziza.Laguecir@fsa.ulaval.ca


With globalization in business academia expanding and deepening, it is timely to question the validity and utility of the concept of country of origin as a base category for comparative cross-cultural research and theory development. In their contribution in the British Journal of Management, Burgess and Shaw (2010) rank the most productive institutions and countries contributing to board membership of top ranked journals on the basis of their country of origin. Taking their findings as a starting point for our discourse, we re-analyse their database, in addition to our own investigations. We contend that while country of origin may be an appropriate category for between-countries comparison of multinational entities, it is of little use when comparing meta-national institutions, such as top tier refereed journal boards and the globalized business/management schools from which they are drawn. Our findings point towards the need for finer differentiation of what constitutes the concept country of origin, but also that its relevance should be questioned in, at least, globalized contexts. The question we pose extends to any pertinent ‘globalized’ topic within and without business and management.