David Collins

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

I embarked upon my full-time career as an academic in 1990, when I became a 'lecturer in Organizational Change' and have over the past thirty years and more held a variety of positions in some of Britian's leading Business Schools. Thanks to experience gained, variously as 'DIrector of Undergraduate Studies'; 'Director of Research'; 'Director of MBA programmes' and more recently 'Dean of Academic Partnerships' and 'Business School' I have been able to secure an international reputation as a teacher and researcher/ writer. In 2019 I secured the award of Senior Fellow in the Higher Education Academy, in part, as a consequence of my experience leading programme development and review processes.

My research at present has a number of inter-locking themes. The first of these relates to my interest in narratives and organizational storytelling. I welcome applications from students who share this interest especially where this is linked to a discussion of management gurus.

The second theme of my on-going research relates to the analysis of management gurus, while the third theme relates to an on-going concern with management consultants and with the advice industry more generally. I welcome inquiries from students willing to explore the broader landscape of management advice.

The third theme of my research is more broadly concerned with fads and fashions. I am disinclined to agree with those who would dismiss innovations as 'mere fads' and would welcome inquiries from those keen to explore the processes of translation associated with the implementation of management knowledge.

Fourthly I have secured an international reputation for my work on Tom Peters and what is often termed 'the excellence project'. This work has built upon my research on stories and storytelling to reveal the cultural priorities and preferences of business excellence. The most recent contribution to this debate - for the very first time - probes the actual practices of business excellence and reveals wholesale misconduct across those organizations celebrated as 'exemplars of excellence'.

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