Why are research and practice on operational excellence still far apart? Ecological knowledge management view

Guilherme Luz Tortorella*, Jiju Antony, Michael Sony, Osvaldo Quelhas, Marcelo Jasmim Meirino, Sergio Franca, Daniel Nascimento, Rodrigo Caiado, Mike Kagioglou, David Romero

*Corresponding author for this work

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This paper aims at examining how the relationship between research and practice on Operational Excellence (OE) occurs. For that, a qualitative, empirical approach was conducted in which 25 experts (12 academics and 13 practitioners) from both emerging and developed economies were interviewed. Content analysis of the collected data was framed within an ecological view of the knowledge management (KM) activities. Findings indicate that, despite the growing efforts to strengthen their relationship in the past decade, there is still a gap between the knowledge of both academia and industry on OE. Nevertheless, both academics and practitioners seem to be fairly aware of the needed countermeasures to mitigate such gap in the future. Based on the commonalities found among experts’ opinions, four propositions for future theory testing and validation were formulated to stress the relationship between OE’s research and practice from the ecological perspective of KM activities. With the competitiveness increase, the search for OE is mandatory for any organization that wishes to remain active in its market. Thus, strengthening the collaboration between industry and academia may facilitate the achievement of OE, avoiding the development of isolated and/or outdated initiatives from both researchers and practitioners, being an original contribution of this study.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-25
Number of pages25
JournalTotal Quality Management and Business Excellence
Early online date26 Mar 2024
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 26 Mar 2024

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