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Humanistic Management Journal

Humanistic Management Journal

Editor-in-Chief: Michael Pirson

ISSN: 2366-603X (print version)
ISSN: 2366-6048 (electronic version)

Journal no. 41463

Humanistic Management Journal Special Issue

Bringing the Humanities and Liberal Learning to the

Study of Business

Submission Deadline (Journal): July 15, 2019

Guest editor and associates:
Anne M. Greenhalgh, Deputy Director, McNulty Leadership Program, The
Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania
Jeffrey Nesteruk, Professor of Legal Studies, Franklin & Marshall College
Douglas E. Allen, David and Deborah West Professor of Management,
Freeman College of Management, Bucknell University
Humanistic Management Journal Special Issue
Call for Papers
This special issue joins an on-going conversation about humanistic management education. In 2011, Amann, Pirson, Dierksmeier, Von Kimakowitz, & Spitzeck published Business schools under fire: Humanistic management education as the way forward. Treating the phenomenon
of management education as a case study or narrative worthy of our time and attention, the authors make a persuasive argument for “how business schools can get out of the line of fire” by identifying problems, analyzing root causes, proposing solutions, and ultimately reflecting
on “the implications of this next generation management education model for the administration of business schools as well as their core tasks of research and teaching.”
One conversational thread in the discussion about humanistic management education – the importance of narrative – emerges as the focus of the second issue of the Humanistic Management Journal (2017). In the opening editorial, Better Stories Needed: How Meaningful
Narratives can Transform the World, Michael Pirson writes:
The stories we tell each other matter. They allow us to engage with what we consider legitimate and relevant. What is it that we recognize and value in our stories of our
shared cultural narratives? It is important that examine with rigor the stories we tell about ourselves as human beings and our connection with each other and nature at large.
At this point of time, we need to understand which stories frame our endeavors better. Given that humanity’s survival as a species is at risk we must unpack misguided frames
about who we are and what we organize for. (p. 3)
In its recent BELL (Business, Entrepreneurship, and Liberal Learning) study, The Carnegie Foundation identifies one paradigm and narrative that informs much of business education; namely, that of the “efficient market”:
Typically, students are asked to learn and apply standard business concepts without their origins and broader significance. When concepts are taught in this way, students tend to see them as corresponding to some objective reality instead of tools created by human beings. This problem is exacerbated when individuals remain embedded in a single conceptual frame over an extended period of time
(as the dominance of the efficient market model in business almost ensures),coming to treat the model as real even if they are aware at some level that it is not (p.75).
Such a blinkered approach to the study of business deprives students of exposure to the broader social, cultural, and ethical dimensions of their professional choices and relationships. This blinkered approach also undermines the development and education of our students because
responsible management and ethical leadership require a deep understanding of a complex and nuanced world rather than simple manipulation, however skillful, of an abstract conceptual schema. Moreover, responsible and ethical decision-making in professional practice calls for an awareness of the multiple potential frames for business choices and the ability to couple market considerations with a broader range of values.
With the support of a grant from the Teagle Foundation -- dedicated to improving teaching and learning in the arts and sciences while addressing issues of financial sustainability and accountability in higher education -- Franklin & Marshall, Bucknell University, and The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania have been engaged in a heterogeneous collaboration over the past three years: An interdisciplinary department within a classic liberal arts college, a pre-professional management program on a liberal arts campus, and a business program within an Ivy League research institution have worked together to explore ways of
developing future humanistic managers and leaders by amplifying the focus on liberal arts content, skills, and pedagogy in the education of our undergraduate business students.
Much of the debate surrounding the differences between the liberal arts and management and business education tends to lapse into longstanding Cartesian Dichotomies such as theory/skills, mind/ body, academic/ vocational, and thinking/ doing. A central premise of our collaboration and this special issue is that these dichotomies are false and can be transcended. This special issue seeks to transcend these dichotomies and find more common ground across
and among educators in the liberal arts and business by providing a “toolkit” of sorts, in other words, creative, critical, and practical ways to develop and educate future humanistic managers and leaders within a rich array of institutional contexts.
The following are suggestions for research endeavors in response to our call for papers:
(1) Explore new modes of interdisciplinary pedagogy and learning for business and the liberal
(2) Foster more reflective, intentional, or substantial incorporation of liberal arts courses across
the undergraduate experience of students majoring in business
(3) Reframe and enrich traditional business fields or disciplines
(4) Expand the points of entry for liberal arts values and perspectives to span business students' entire undergraduate experience.
We believe that these research endeavors might best be displayed through original research, practice perspectives from administration, teachers and students, essays and future challenges.
References/ Sources
Amann, W., Pirson, M., Dierksmeier, C., Von Kimakowitz, E., & Spitzeck, H. (2011). Business schools under fire: Humanistic management education as the way
forward (p. 472). Palgrave Macmillan.
Colby, A., Ehrlich, T., Sullivan, W. M., & Dolle, J. R. (2011). Rethinking undergraduate business education: Liberal learning for the profession (Vol. 20). John Wiley & Sons.
Pirson, M. (2017). Better stories needed: how meaningful narratives can transform the world.
Submission to the special issue is required through Editorial Manager at
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  • Aims and Scope

    Aims and Scope


    The humanistic management journal focuses on the protection of human dignity and the promotion of human well-being within the context of organizing. Work within the above paradigmatic pillars can focus on the individual, group, organizational, systemic, and philosophical levels. The journal encourages contributions from various disciplinary perspectives representing the consilience of knowledge, e.g. contributions from  psychology, sociology, economics, cybernetics, physics, evolutionary biology, anthropology etc, as well as interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary contributions are encouraged. In similar fashion, perspectives from academia, practice and public policy are encouraged. As social business and entrepreneurship and conscious, regenerative, and cooperative capitalism gain visibility, this is a forum for researchers, practitioners, and policy makers interested in a life-conducive economic system for which humanistic management is critical.

    The Journal adopts double blind peer review.

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