Disruptions – and their silver linings

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REGENT BUSINESS SCHOOL (RBS) is poised to launch its flagship programme, the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA). In the lead up to the launch, the institution is leveraging the current disruptions caused by Covid-19, to develop a unique approach to the DBA. This approach is encapsulated in three constructs: relevance; problem-based; and future-focused. The DBA webinar-series was conceived to elaborate on these ideas, with the first focusing on ‘relevance’ of academic research undertaken for the Doctorate.  

In this first of a three-part webinar series, Prof Rene Pellissier, experienced academic and supervisor, answered the question: ‘is there a new way of looking at academic research?’, while Dr Neva Makgetla, senior economist at the Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies (TIPS), responded to the relevance and impact of research in relation to economic policy.

Prof Pellissier’s key message is that for a DBA to be relevant in an environment where the rate of change is exponential, a Mode 3 knowledge production stance is the answer. Mode 3 knowledge production is focused on government, academia, industry, and civil society as key actors, who together, promote a democratic approach to innovation that is socially responsive (Campbell & Carayannis, 2011).

Dr Makgetla, on the other hand, dismissed the notion of shifting (economic) policy based on academic research. Rather, the questions that should be answered is: ‘what are the real-world problems that could be addressed through rigorous, action-oriented research?’ Her key message is that RBS has to find that ‘sweet spot’ on the continuum of research that meets the methodological rigours of the discipline and the profession; and also reflects quick and nimble responses to urgent matters that affect local, national and global communities.

With these inputs, RBS is gaining a better understanding of the characteristics of a degree that will look both ways: academia and real-world societal and economic problems.

If you missed this webinar, you can watch the recording below.


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