Academic Journal Guide 2015

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The Purpose and Features of the Academic Journal Guide 2015

Welcome to the Chartered Association of Business Schools’ Academic Journal Guide 2015 (the Guide). The Guide is based upon peer review, editorial and expert judgements following the evaluation of many hundreds of publications, and is informed by statistical information relating to citation. It is a guide to the range, subject matter and relative quality of journals in which business and management academics publish their research.

The primary motivation of the Editors and the Scientific Committee is to provide a level playing field. Emerging scholars will have greater clarity as to which journals to aim for, and where the best work in their field tends to be clustered. By the same measure, publication in top journals gives scholars a recognised currency on which career progress can be based; should personal networks deny its currency in one institution, there will be others who will recognise and welcome it.

Good work may, of course, be found anywhere, but it is a generally held view that good work is more likely to be found in some journals as compared to others. The Editors recognise that any guide that seeks to differentiate between journals will naturally be contentious. Some of this will reflect the natural tensions in academia between shared scholarly identity, exchange and debate, and the individual pursuit of very specialised knowledge that, when disseminated, is likely to be only accessible to a very small audience. It will also reflect the tensions between efforts to commodify academic labour time, and the acclaim exceptional bodies of work receive across the scholarly community. Whilst recognising that exceptional scholarly work may be found in many places, we similarly accept that such work tends to be clustered in particular locales and journals, in a process that may reflect both the availability of resources, and accumulated collective human capital. Identifying such locales is a difficult and fraught process, but we remain convinced that it is better that it is done through the involvement of scholarly experts and their associations than without. We would welcome feedback and dialogue with representative scholarly associations that have not participated in this iteration, with a view to broadening the basis of representation in future iterations of the Guide.


  • Features:

    The Guide is distinctive in that, unlike other journal guides, it is not based purely on some weighted average of journal metrics. Rather, the Guide reflects the perceptions of the Editors, informed by the Scientific Committee and by expert peers and scholarly associations with whom they consulted as to the relative standing of journals in each subject area. As a consequence, there is no mechanistic metrics based formula that will capture the published ratings.

    On occasion, the ratings of some journals, when based purely on such metrics, do not reflect the views of the relevant academic community. Our purpose therefore was to produce a guide that took into consideration this subjective input.

    The subject experts (members of the Scientific Committee representing individual subject areas) were provided with a variety of metrics for each journal (detailed below) and were asked to consult widely within their respective subject area academic communities. In the case of overlapping fields or expertise, subject experts worked together in a process that was distinguished by a collegiate approach. Proposed ratings were considered by the Editors and Methodologists. The Editors then engaged in feedback and consultation with subject experts. On the basis that a disproportionate number of highly rated journals undermines the notion of excellence in any given subject area, as well as comparisons across subject areas, the Editors, in some cases, were not able to follow the initial advice given, leading to a process of further consultation and compromise.

    The Guide is not intended to be a fully comprehensive one, given, inter alia, the problems of demarcating what is either business and management research and/or relevant to it, and what is not. Inclusion in the Guide is wholly at the discretion of the Editors and the Scientific Committee, and no undertakings have been made that all journals will have been included. Non-inclusion in the Guide should not necessarily be taken as a judgment of journal quality, but may reflect a wide range of factors, ranging from the aims and scope of the journal that lie outside the scope of business and management studies to, quite simply, the Scientific Committee and those they consulted, not encountering sufficient evidence on which to formulate an opinion.

    As outlined in the methodology section, the Guide builds on the previous ‘ABS Guide 2010’, and the Editors of this Guide owe a debt of gratitude to the Editors and Scholarly Experts involved in the former.


  • Acknowledgements – a Message from the Management Board

    We are hugely grateful to the Editors, Methodologists and members of the Scientific Committee without whom the Academic Journal Guide 2015 would not be possible. The work they have carried out to analyse data, consult with subject communities and find consensus has led to an impressive and robust Guide to the range, subject matter and quality of journals in which business and management academics publish their research. With their hard work we have a Guide which is genuinely based upon peer review, along with editorial and expert judgements following from the evaluation of many hundreds of publications.

    We are also very thankful to the founding Editors of the Guide. 'The ABS Guide' was originally created and then published in 2009 through the initiative of Professor Charles Harvey, Aidan Kelly, Professor Huw Morris, and Professor Michael Rowlinson. Supported by their peer community they have helped produce a very valuable service to the business and management academic community. This 2015 edition of the Guide continues and builds on their work.

    Finally, we must thank Thomson Reuters for the permission to use their JCR data and Elsevier for the use of their SNIP and SJR metrics powered by Scopus.

  • Academic Journal Guide Management Board

    Professor Rolf D. Cremer, Dean Emeritus of CEIBS and Head, Global Bridges China Forum (Chair of the Board)

    Professor Angus Laing, Dean of Business & Economics, Loughborough University and Chair, Chartered Association of Business Schools

    Professor Bob Galliers, Bentley University

    Anne Kiem, Chief Executive, Chartered Association of Business Schools


    Professor Geoffrey Wood, Warwick Business School
    Professor David Peel, Lancaster University Management School


    Professor Marc Goergen, Cardiff Business School
    Professor James Walker, Henley Business School


    Professor Andrew Simpson, Sheffield University Management School


    Professor Heinz Tüselmann, Manchester Metropolitan University Business School




    Nominated by



    Prof. Lisa Jack, University of Portsmouth,

    Prof. Kevin Holland, Cardiff Business School,

    Management  Control Association


    Behavioural science

    Prof. Wandi Bruine de Bruin, Leeds University Business School,

    Business & Economic History

    Prof. Geoffrey G. Jones, Harvard Business School,

    Harvard Business School


    Prof. Marco Pagano, University of Naples,



    Prof. John Wilson, University of St. Andrews,


    Economics, Econometrics and Statistics

    Prof. Tim Worrall, University of Edinburgh School of Economics,

    Prof. Robert Taylor, Essex Business School,

    University of Edinburgh

    University of Essex

    Enterprise/ entrepreneurship

    Prof. Mike Wright, Imperial College Business School, Imperial College Business School
    Ethics, CSR and management

    Prof. Stephen Brammer, Birmingham Business School,

    Birmingham Business School


    Prof. Pawan Budwar

    Aston Business School

    Prof. Ammon Salter, University of Bath School of Management,

    University of Bath School of Management

    International Business 

    Prof. Heinz Tüselmann, Manchester Metropolitan University Business School,

    Manchester Metropolitan University Business School


    Prof. Bob Galliers, Bentley University, USA,


    Management education

    Prof. Ken Starkey, University of Nottingham, University of Nottingham


    Prof. Gilles Laurent, HEC Paris,

    Prof. Nina Reynolds, University of Southampton,




    Prof. Robert Taylor, Essex Business School, Essex Business School


    Prof. Henk Volberda, Rotterdam School of Management,

    Dr Sotirios Paroutis, Warwick Business School,



    Operations management

    Prof. Cipriano Forza, Padua,


    Organisational Psychology Prof. Marc van Veldhoven, Tilburg University,


    Organisational Psychology and General Management

    Prof. David Guest, King's College London, King's College London
    Organisational Sociolology

    Prof. Nic Beech, University of St. Andrews,

    Prof. Nick Llewellyn, Warwick Business School,

    University of St. Andrews School of Management


    Prof. Juergen Branke, Warwick Business School, COPIOR
    Public Sector

    Prof. Steve Martin, Cardiff Business School,

    Alistair Jones, DeMontford University,

    Cardiff Business School


    Regional & area studies Prof. Frank Horwitz, Cranfield School of Management,

    Cranfield School of Management

    Regional studies, planning & environment

    Prof. Ron Martin, Judge Business School, Judge Business School

    Sector studies

    Prof. Julie Froud, Manchester Business School,

    Prof. Peter McKiernan, Strathclyde Business School,

    Manchester Business School

    Strathclyde Business School

    Sports, leisure and tourism

    Prof. Stephen Page, School of Tourism, Bournemouth University,

    John Tribe, Surrey Business School,



    Social Sciences

    Prof. Mark Stuart, Leeds University Business School,


  • Applications to the Academic Journal Guide open once every three years. Applications to the 2018 edition have been made and the application process is closed.

    All applications will be reviewed by the Editors and the Methodologists, and are judged on scholarly grounds, and according to the principle that authors will not be expected to pay to have their work published; the latter does not preclude optional "gold" open access fees.