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Article

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Published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Statistics and Management Systems, Vol. 9, No. 3, 2006, pp. 661-687.

Published version of this article may be found here.

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Journal of Statistics and Management Systems

Abstract

A review and analysis of studies on the interface between Operations Management (OM) academicians and industry practitioners indicate the existence of a persistent gap between what is being taught and what is relevant to practitioners in their daily jobs. The majority of practitioner studies have been directed at upper management levels, yet academia typically educates students for entry level or management trainee (undergraduate) and mid-management (MBA) positions. A recurring finding was that academicians prefer to teach quantitative techniques while practitioners favor qualitative concepts. The OM curricula literature shows some disagreements between academicians concerning subject matter, and a wide variety of teaching opinions. This paper provides an extensive analytical review of OM curricula literature along with their respective authors’ conclusions. From this analysis we suggest a customer-focused business plan to close the gap between industry and academia. This plan can be modified to account for faculty teaching and research interests, local industry requirements and institution specific factors such as class sizes and resources.

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