Since the establishment of the SIG in 2003, we have represented the community of marketing and retailing academics, and sought to keep British Academy of Management members updated on the current scholarly issues in the field, along with developing new research agendas and dialogues. In doing so, the SIG has provided networking opportunities for new and existing academics in support of their endeavor to explore and articulate marketing and retail theory. Key issues presented at SIG events and the Marketing and Retail Track at annual BAM conferences have centered around; retail management, internationalisation, consumer behaviour, marketing principles and practice.
More recently, we have developed a specific focus around the theory-practice divide. While this is not a new debate, the SIG recognises the increased relevance in terms of government funding in the UK and business school research and teaching. As marketing and retail academics, we are not only aware of the growing priority of impact and application of our research, but also the associated challenges as a result of the lower value placed on practitioner-orientated publications by University promotion boards and evaluation committees. The tensions around this debate for academics across the world has also been recognised by the editors of the leading European marketing journals, the European Journal of Marketing and Journal of Marketing Management.
As fields of study, marketing and retailing roots are in industry and therefore, represent a vibrant and exciting area of research! Therefore, as a SIG, we view this debate as an opportunity. We believe there is a leadership role for the SIG to bring marketing and retail academics and executives together, not only to develop the scholarly discipline of marketing and retailing, but also to disseminate this new knowledge to various audiences. Several initiatives by the SIG are now underway to encourage the collaboration and exchange of valuable experience and knowledge from theory and practice. This includes engagement with the Chartered Institute of Marketing and the Chartered Management Institute, important in the co-creation of value in the academic-practitioner relationship.
In moving marketing and retail debates forward, we have established a tradition of hosting SIG events lead by academic and practitioners and also Professional Development Workshops at the annual conference. Such events have focused on subjects relating to the future of the high street, global fashion store, impact research agenda, and collaborative workshops with the Academy of Marketing and professional organisations such as the CMI and CIM. Future plans will ensure we create space for members to focus and develop practical and pure marketing and retailing scholarship in established and emergent areas of interest such as social media, sustainability, ethics, online retailing and brand communities. We also welcome cross-disciplinary research in areas such as finance and organisational psychology.