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A content analysis of contributions to the Management International Review journal.

P.R. Chandy, Professor of Finance and Toulouse Scholar, University of North Texas, Denton, TX, U.S.A.

Pradeep Gopalakrishna, Assistant Professor of Marketing, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY, U.S.A.


Publishing represents the scholarly contributions of individuals and plays a significant part in faculty and institutional evaluations. Because of the importance of publishing, there is considerable interest among scholars in getting a better understanding of the relative quantity of published researched contributed by individuals and institutions. This is evidenced by the publications of Carpenter et al. (1974); Andrews and McKenzie (1978); Ricks and Czinkota (1979); Bazley and Nikolai (1975); Brown and Gardner (1985); Erwin and Toyne (1987); Nehrt (1987, 1989); Ball and McCulloch (1988); Morrison and Inkpen (1991). These studies were well received by the academic community for documenting the contributions of individuals and institutions to the business disciplines.

Heck and Cooley (1988) state that documenting the contributions of scholars to the literature provides an objective measure of research productivity. In other words, a historical analysis of research contributions can serve as a benchmark to evaluate and set the standards of scholarly output. Such benchmarks are likely to be useful for self-evaluation purposes, in providing valuable input in promotion, tenure and salary decisions and in the formation of expectation of the research productivity of faculty. This paper documents the contributions to one journal, Management International Review (MIR) by analyzing the sources of articles, authors and institutions. The period covered in this study is from 1976 to the end of year 1990 (fifteen years).

Literature Review

Among business disciplines, studies that evaluated the contributions of authors, institutions, and journals can be divided into two main groups: Those that used subjective measurement criteria such as faculty and educators' perceptions of journal quality and those that used objective measurement criteria such as number of articles published (productivity), number of pages published, or average cites received. Among studies that used subjective measurement criteria, the notable ones include studies by Estes (1970); Benjamin and Brenner (1974); Bazley and Nikolai (1975); Brooker and Shinoda (1976); Andrews and McKenzie (1978); Weber and Sevenson (1981); Coe and Weinstock (1983); Ebrahimi, Ganesh, and Chandy (1992).

The second group of studies that used more objective evaluation criteria and focused on the contributions of individuals and institutions includes studies by Ricks and Czinkota (1979); Windal (1981); Koch, Merino, and Berman (1984); Brown and Gardner (1985); Heck and Gremser (1986); Thanapoulos and Vernon (1987); Ervin and Toyne (1987); Nehrt (1987, 1989); Heck and Cooley (1988); Ball and McCulloch (1988); and Morrison and Inkpen (1991). The few studies that used citation analysis include studies by McRae (1974); Zeff and Rhode (1975); Dyckman and Zeff (1984); Brown and Gardner (1985); and Smith and Krogstad (1988).


Data for the present study was gathered from each issue of MIR. Only main articles and notes were included in the analysis for assessing individual and institutional authorship. Publications such as book reviews were not included in the study. A fifteen year period since 1976 was chosen, and this is expected to provide a good history of publication percentage by academic and non-academic institutions, as well as by faculty in different universities.


Table 1 displays the number of articles published, number of authors appearing in each journal and number of academic institutions represented over the entire period of the study. A total of 481 articles an notes were published by 558 authors during the years 1976-1990 in MIR, an average of 32.06 articles per year. The average number of appearances per author for the journal was 0.86 (481/558). The authors represented 261 different institutions from across the world.

Acceptance rate for MIR is relatively low. Based on Cabell's Directory, it was ascertained that the acceptance rate for MIR is about twenty percent. How TABULAR DATA OMITTED does this compare with the results of studies in other business disciplines such as accounting or finance? The acceptance rates identified here after one review are the same or a little higher than some accounting journals (15% to 25%) and some finance journals such as Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics (35% each) (Brown and Sundem 1982, Vargo and Agudelo 1988). However, as indicated in previous studies, acceptance rates for the most prestigious accounting and finance journals are relatively low (Sundem 1987, Coe and Weinstock 1983).

Table 1 provides some insight into the percentage of authors who have authored or co-authored articles in MIR. A majority of the authors appeared only once or twice. For example, 78% of all authors appeared one time and 13% of all authors appear twice. Despite the longevity of the journal, the percentage of one-time authors is high, a result which is in conflict with the findings of Heck and Cooley (1988). Heck and Cooley found in their analysis of finance literature that the age of a journal and the number of one-time authors are inversely related. Clearly, factors such as low acceptance rates and the lengthy review process may have discouraged some authors from submitting more than one manuscript. Also, many authors publish research outside the finance and accounting area.

Contributions by Scholars

Ranking of most prolific authors based on total adjusted appearances in MIR are shown in Table 2.

Both adjusted and total appearances are reported in the tables. Adjusted appearances were computed by adjusting for situations involving more than one author. If an article was written by one person, the author received one point. If the article was co-authored, each author received one half point. Authors of tri-authored articles received one third weight, etc. Based on adjusted appearances, L. Soenen leads the list with 4.50 appearances, followed by R. Aggarwal (4) and Y.M. Geyikdagi (4). Some of the other prolific authors include R.A. Ajami, G. Boseman, R. Grosse, U. Yavas and S. Aggarwal. These scholars have built their reputation over a relatively long period of time, since graduating from college. Caution needs to be exercised in interpreting the ranking of contributing authors. First, conventional wisdom holds that quality of articles published need to be considered in addition to the quantity of articles to measure scholarly research output. Our study ignores the quality aspect, because the definition of "quality" research is somewhat subjective. Only by looking at factors such as TABULAR DATA OMITTED number of citations, can one measure the contribution made by different researchers over time. Also, the "blind review process" minimizes the variations in quality.

Table 3 shows the rankings of the prolific authors in MIR based on the total number of pages contributed to the journals over the period studied. This type of ranking is similar to the work of Niemi (1988), who measured research performance by calculating the total number of pages contributed to four leading marketing journals.(1)

For MIR, a comparison of results show in Table 2 with the results obtained in Table 3 reveals a great deal of similarity in the two rankings. This is to be expected. Four authors rank in the top ten on both measures (adjusted article count and number of pages): R. Aggarwal, R. Grosse, L.A. Soenen, and S. Aggarwal. While a great deal of similarity exists in the rankings, some distinctions emerge in the rank order of authors. The major differences between Table 2 and 3 are as follows: R. Grosse moves up substantially in ranking (from rank 5 to rank 2), while U. Yavas moves down significantly (from rank 7 to TABULAR DATA OMITTED rank 18). On average, F. J. Contractor's articles tend to be the longest (20.66 pages per article), while J. Madura's articles are the shortest (8.50 pages per article). Among the top authors, the median length of an article is 13.50 pages.

Contributions by Academic Institutions

Three important factors have been identified in judging the excellence of programs offered in various institutions. One is quality of students. The second is outstanding faculty, and the third is the nature of response in the market for graduates (Niemi 1988). There is evidence that faculty research is only one measure of performance in faculty. However, it is important to measure the research performance of faculty for promotion and tenure, teaching load assignments, and granting of release time for research. According to Heck and Cooley (1988), the volume of published research is an important determinant of the quality of academic institutions. The rank order in MIR based on the publications by faculty at various institutions is shown in Table 4.(2)


Table 4 ranks academic institutions according to adjusted and unadjusted appearance in MIR. Adjusted appearances have been reported to eliminate the bias stemming from co-authorship at the same institution. University of Michigan tops the list with 10 appearances, followed by Pennsylvania State University (9.83), University of Toledo (7.23), Tel-Aviv University (6.5), and University of Illinois (6.16). The rankings vary somewhat on an unadjusted bases.

Table 4 does not include the universities in Germany, and a few other countries. Over the fifteen year period studies, German universities contributed about 8% of all publications, while universities in counties such as Italy, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Sweden, Austria, Greece, Finland, Norway, Netherlands, Japan, Turkey, Poland, Korea, Hong Kong and Saudi Arabia contributed 18% of all publications. The rest (74%) came from U.S.A. (predominant), England, Canada, Australia, Israel and India.

Contributing Academic Institutions vis-a-vis Non-Academic Institutions

Table 5 reveals the percentage of articles published by academic institutions (U.S. and foreign) and non-academic institutions over the study period.

This table reveals that during the last fifteen years, participation from scholars in American universities has increased dramatically, from 41% in 1976-1980 to 62% in 1986-1990. Contributions from scholars in Germany dropped significantly from 1976-1980 to 1986-1990. There was little change in contributions from researchers in non-academic environments. There has also been a steady decline in contributions from scholars in British universities. This indicates that MIR has developed a strong reputation in North America and attracts a large number of manuscripts from researchers in U.S.A. and Canada.
Table 5. Distribution of Academic and Non-Academic
Contributions to Management International Review
Category 1976-1980 1981-1985 1986-1990
 % % %
U.S.A. 41 50 62
Canada 4 7 5
England 10 8 6
Germany 15 6 6
Other Countries 22 21 15
Non-Univ. Employed 8 8 7


The evaluation of scholarly output using contributions made to the body of published research has been discussed in most business disciplines. The present study ranks individual authors and academic institutions based on contributions to the body of published research in Management International Review during the period of 1976-1990. This study illustrates the contributions made by individual authors focusing on the quantity of articles published rather than the quality of their output. This may serve as a useful benchmark to evaluate scholarly output, and provide input to the promotion and tenure decisions in business schools which have international business program. The study identified the most prolific authors who contributed to the journal.

The rankings of leading individual authors in terms of number of pages published by faculty in the MIR were also examined. The most prolific authors based on adjusted number of appearances in MIR include L. Soenen, R. Aggarwal, Y. Geyikdagi, R. Ajami, and G. Boseman.

Using institutional contribution as a measure of scholarly output, we found that University of Michigan, Pennsylvania State University, University of Toledo, Tel-Aviv University, and University of Illinois were some of the top institutions.

Scholars from many highly visible and prestigious institutions were among the leading contributors to the journal. However, there are other schools with strong academic reputations that were not highly ranked here. This may be because faculties from these institutions may be contributing to other publishing outlets.

The results indicate an increase in participation by U.S. and other foreign academic institutions. Since 1976, the contributions from academic British and German institutions to MIR have declined.

Two significant insights can be gained from our study. First, a historical analysis of aggregate research contributions such as this one can serve as a useful guide to students and faculty who are assessing institutions offering high quality business programs and employing the best researchers.

The second insight to be gained is that a significant trend was evident in the results reported. The proportion of articles contributed by U.S. academic institutions in MIR during the recent fifteen years has been on the rise. One likely contributing factor is that the 1980s witnessed exciting and dramatic change in major Western economics and other developing countries. Perhaps in light of these developments, academic scholars have sensed, the opportunity is "now" to get research published in quality journals like MIR.

In conclusion, the rankings provided in this study provide a barometer of the most active writers and institutions over the past seventeen years. Publication requirements placed on faculty need to be anchored in reality. Administrators placed in the position to evaluate colleagues often have limited data on which to base their decisions. It is hoped that analysis of research contributions such as this are viewed as information useful as a benchmark to business scholars and administrators for evaluating faculty.


1 One measure of research productivity is the number of pages published in a journal. The argument in favor of this type of qualification is based on the idea that journal pages are at a premium. Top academic journal reviewers and editors generally do their best to condense what the author is attempting to say, as much as possible. If that is true, then those scholars who have actually written the most number of pages may have (despite rigorous review processes) made a greater contribution over a long period of time. This argument is controversial and one might say that some of the most important cited articles are quite short. Length of the article has nothing to do with the impact of the research on the profession. This is certainly a valid argument.

2 Productivity may be partly a function of the size of the business faculty. However, this type of data covering the entire period of the study was difficult to obtain. The results of our study are biased in fewer of the large universities which generally have a larger number of active researchers.


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Ball, D.A. and W.H. McCulloch (1988), "International Business Education Programs in American and Non-American Schools: How they are Ranked by the Academy of International Business," Journal of International Business Studies (Summer 1988), p. 295-300.

Bazley, J.D. and L.A. Nikolai (1975), "A Comparison of Published Accounting Research and Qualities of Accounting Faculty and Doctoral Programs," The Accounting Review (July 1975), pp. 605-610.

Benjamin, J.J. and V. Brenner (1974), "Perceptions of Journal Quality," Accounting Review (April 1974), pp. 360-362.

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Brown, L.D. and J.C. Gardner (1975), "Using Citation Analysis to assess the impact of journals and articles on contemporary accounting research," Journal of Accounting Research (Spring 1985), pp. 84-108.

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Carpenter, C.G., D.L. Crumbley, and R.H. Strawser (1974), "A New Ranking of Accounting Faculties and Doctoral Programs," Journal of Accountancy (June 1974), pp. 90-94.

Coe, R.K. and T. Weinstock (1983), "Evaluating the Finance Journals: The Department Chairperson's Perspective," Journal of Financial Research (Winter 1983), pp. 345-349.

Dyckman, T. and S.A. Zeff (1984), "Two decades of the Journal of Accounting Research: a review article," Journal of Accounting Research (vol. 22, 1979), pp. 225-297.

Ebrahimi, B., G. K. Ganesh, and P.R. Chandy (1991), "International and Non-International Business Journal Awareness and Evaluation: Perception of Active Researchers," Management International Review (vol. 31, 4/1991), pp. 342-364.

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Heck, J.L. and P. Cooley (1988), "Most Frequent Contributors to the Finance Literature," Financial Management (Autumn 1988), pp. 100-108.

Heck, J.L. and W.G. Gremser (1986), "Six Decades of the Accounting Review: A Summary of Author and Institutional Contributors," The Accounting Review (October 1986), pp. 735-744.

Koch, B., B. Merino, and N. Berman (1984), "Publishing patterns of Doctoral Graduates: A Preference for Perishing," in Doctoral Programs in Accounting (ed) Thomas Burns, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, pp. 351-366.

Madura, J. and D.E. McCarty (1989) "Research Trends and Gaps in International Financial Management: A Note," Management International Review, 1989, pp. 75-79.

McRae, T.W. (1973), "A Citational analysis of the accounting information Network," Journal of Accounting Research (Spring 1973), pp. 80-92.

Morrison, A.J. and A. Inkpen (1991), "An Analysis of Significant Contributions to the International Business Literature," Journal of International Business Studies (First Quarter 1991), pp. 143-153.

Nehrt, L.C. (1987), "The Ranking of Masters Program in International Business," Journal of International Business Studies (Fall 1987), pp. 91-99.

Niemi, A.W. (1988), "Research Productivity of American Business Schools," Review of Business and Economic Research (Spring 1988), pp. 1-17.

Ricks, D.A. and M. Czinkota (1979), "International Business: An Examination of the Corporate Viewpoint," Journal of International Business Studies (Fall 1979), pp. 97-100.

Smith, G. and J.L. Krogstad (1988), "A taxonomy of content and citations in Auditing: a Journal of Practice and Theory," Auditing, A Journal of Practice and Theory (Fall 1988), pp. 109-117.

Sundem, G.L. (1987), "Research Prospects for Accounting Doctoral Students," in A Passion for Excellence in Accounting Doctoral Education (American Accounting Association, 1987).

Thanapoulos, J. and I.R. Vernon (1987), "International Business Education in the AACSB Schools," Journal of International Business Studies (Spring 1987), pp. 91-98.

Vargo, R.J. and J. Agudelo (1988), The Author's Guide to Accounting and Financial Reporting Publications. (John Wiley Publishing Co., 1988).

Weber, R.P. and W.C. Stevenson (1981), "Evaluations of Accounting Journals and Departmental Quality," Accounting Review (July 1981), pp. 596-612.

Windal, F.W. (1981), "Publishing for a Varied Public, An Empirical Study," Accounting Review (April 1981), pp. 653-658.

Zeff, S.A. and J. Rhode (1975), "Comments on Ranking Accounting Faculties and Doctoral Programs," Journal of Accountancy (February 1975) pp. 105-106.
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Author:Chandy, P.R.; Gopalakrishna, Pradeep
Publication:Management International Review
Date:Jul 1, 1992
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