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Bridging the Data-Divide Between Practitioners and Academics: Approaches to Collaborating Better to Leverage Each Other's Resources

Benoit, Sabine, Klose, Sonja, Wirtz, Jochen, Andreasen, Tor W. and Keiningham, Timothy L. (2019) Bridging the Data-Divide Between Practitioners and Academics: Approaches to Collaborating Better to Leverage Each Other's Resources Journal of Service Management.

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Organizations (data gatherers in our context) drown in data while at the same time seeking managerially relevant insights. Academics (data hunters) have to deal with decreasing respondent participation and escalating costs of data collection while at the same time seeking to increase the managerial relevance of their research. We provide a framework on which managers and academics can collaborate better to leverage each other’s resources.


This research synthesizes the academic and managerial literature on the realities and priorities of practitioners and academics with regard to data. Based on the literature, reflections from the world’s leading service research centers, and the authors’ own experiences, we develop recommendations on how to collaborate in research.


Four dimensions of different data realities and priorities were identified: research problem, research resources, research process, and research outcome. In total, 26 recommendations are presented that aim to equip academics to leverage the potential of corporate data for research purposes and to help managers to leverage research results for their business.

Research limitations/implications:

This article argues that both practitioners and academics have a lot to gain from collaborating by exchanging corporate data for scientific approaches and insights. However, the gap between different realities and priorities needs to be bridged when doing so. The article first identifies data realities and priorities and then develops recommendations on how to best collaborate given these differences.

Practical implications

This research has the potential to contribute to managerial practice by informing academics on how to better collaborate with the managerial world and thereby facilitate collaboration and the dissemination of academic research for the benefit of both parties.


Whereas previous literature has primarily examined practitioner–academic collaboration in general, this study is the first to focus specifically on the aspects related to sharing corporate data and to elaborate on academic and corporate objectives with regard to data and insights.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > Surrey Business School
Authors :
Klose, Sonja
Wirtz, Jochen
Andreasen, Tor W.
Keiningham, Timothy L.
Date : 9 September 2019
Depositing User : Diane Maxfield
Date Deposited : 25 Sep 2019 13:25
Last Modified : 25 Sep 2019 13:25

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