CEBMa Newsletter February 2015


Dear reader

At CEBMa we have been pretty busy with all kind of activities, so we are excited to share details of that with you in this newsletter.

You will notice that the number of interviews and links to recently (or soon-to-be) published papers has increased. This is because we secretly aspire to turn our newsletter into a quarterly magazine. For this reason the next issue of our newsletter will also be available in a format that is easier to read off line.

Happy reading!

 Eric Barends, Managing Director

Denise Rousseau, Chair, Academic Board


Under The Microscope

The evidence-based management movement has HR in its sights. But is the profession willing or able to become more evidence-based? To find out, Katie Jacobs, editor at HR Magazine, interviewed a large number of evidence-based advocates, including Sara Rynes, Paul Kearns, Jeffrey Pfeffer, Rob Briner, David Guest, Wendy Hirsch, Denise Rousseau, Eugenio Pirri, and many more.

This article first appeared in HR Magazine January 2015 and is made available by permission of Mark Allen Business and Leisure.

You can download the article here >>


Bath School of Management Starts Open Program in EBMgt

An interview with Jan Stiles, Director of Executive Education

At CEBMa we are frequently asked where you can follow a course on evidence-based practice. There are (some) universities and business schools that offer their students an elective course on evidence-based management, but open programs are scarce. We are therefore proud to announce that Bath University’s School of Management, one of the UK's leading business schools, offers the executive open program “Improving decision-making through evidence-based management”. The three day course is led by Rob Briner, CEBMa's Vice-Chair and Professor of Organizational Psychology at Bath’s School of Management, and Eric Barends, CEBMa’s Managing Director, and is scheduled for June 30 and July 1 and 2 2015

To find out more about Bath School of Management, its executive development, its open programs and EBP, we spoke to Jan Stiles, the School’s Director of Executive Education.


You can read the interview here >>

You can read more about the program here >>

A Big THANK YOU to All the Guinea Pigs who Tested our First Online Course Module!

In our last newsletter we announced that we had completed our first online module. This first module is a general introduction to EBP and covers its basic principles and common misconceptions.

Although EBP experts from CEBMa and learning scientists from Carnegie Mellon developed the module, we needed practitioners, students and teachers to try it out and give us feedback. Fifteen volunteers took up our challenge, and, with their feedback, we were able to improve the module.

The module will be freely available in March through Carnegie Mellon's Open Learning Initiative website >>


Teaching Evidence-Based Practice To First-Year Undergraduates

An interview with Rowena Kerkhove, teacher

Rowena Kerkhove has been a lecturer at the School of Economics and Management at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences for ten years. She teaches undergraduates who are studying economics.


What brought you to the topic of evidence-based management in your course?

After changing our curriculum, our course director decided that we should teach research at an earlier stage. Before we only taught research methods in the final year, but we kept noticing that students had difficulty thinking critically and were not able to formulate research questions on their own. One of my colleagues was a member of CEBMa, and all of the teachers in our section took a course on EBP.  I enjoyed the course and saw how it could help to teach students to think on their own.  

Do your students like it?

Some students who have a flair for doing research enjoy these classes. Others struggle for a while. We start in year one, and they will start to need it most in year three (of their four-year course) so at first they don't see the need for it. But we want to plant the seeds, so to speak. Not all of my colleagues understand the need for it either.


Join Our EBMgt Event in Vancouver!

At the annual meeting of the Academy of Management in Vancouver, CEBMa plans to hold its very own Evidence-Based Management event for practitioners, teachers, and academics. It will be a perfect opportunity to share your EBMgt experiences and initiatives promoting evidence-based practice in organizations. Or just come and meet people in the EBMgt network.

The event is scheduled for Saturday August 8. More news will follow in our next newsletter.


What's the Evidence For... Evidence-Based HR?

In the first of a series of columns in HR Magazine, Rob Briner, CEBMa's Vice-Chair and Professor of Organizational Psychology at Bath University’s School of Management, explores the case for evidence-based HR.

I’ve recently had a lot of discussions about the evidence for employee engagement. Whenever someone makes a claim about the positive effects of employee engagement on performance, retention and apparently everything, I can’t help but ask a simple question: What’s the evidence? Not once has anyone provided valid evidence.

Even senior HR professionals come up with answers like “it’s obvious”, “you can just see it”, “I read a study once” (I happened to know the study and it isn’t actually relevant), “I heard a presentation about it”, “it was on a graph” or “there’s tonnes of evidence” (but were unable to say what any of it was). Personally, I find it shocking that any profession that wants to be taken seriously is so unconcerned and uninformed about the nature of the evidence base for what it does.

Continue reading Rob's column here >>

 New Publication

Developing an Evidence-Based HRM

Through the Conscientious Reliance on Evidence, Sound Decision Process, and Stakeholders Perspectives

by Denise M. Rousseau  


 You can download the paper here >>

CEBMa Develops App for Iphone

The CAT (Critically Appraised Topic) Manager helps managers and consultants to critically evaluate the trustworthiness of scientific studies. This enables them to answer practical questions about the effect of an intervention or success/risk factor on an outcome. The beta-version of the app will be available for iPhone in March. A version for Android will follow later.

The CAT (Critically Appraised Topic) Manager helps managers and consultants to critically evaluate the trustworthiness of scientific studies. This enables them to answer practical questions about the effect of an intervention or success/risk factor on an outcome. The beta-version of the app will be available for iPhone in March. A version for Android will follow later.

 Of course, we need volunteers to test our app. So if you are knowledgeable about the critical appraisal of scientific studies and blessed with a practical bent of mind…

... please contact us.

Did You Know ....

... we have a Twitter account? It's a great way to learn about upcoming activities, talks and presentations by CEBMa members, EBP related stuff, new publications, etc.

You can follow us here >>


So How Is Our Database Of Evidence Summaries Doing?

Actually, pretty well. In our last newsletter we asked you to send us systematic reviews or meta-analyses (or any other type of evidence summary) that you felt was relevant to management practice, which you did. As a result, we were able to upload more than 450 meta-analyses and systematic reviews!

All studies are easily searchable by title and abstract and are freely downloadable. If you want to take a look, please go to cebma-library.org.

The next step will be assigning keywords to translate academic constructs into equivalent or alternative terms that are commonly used by management practitioners.

Again, we need volunteers to help us out. So if you are interested in volunteering some of your time and talent...

... please contact us.


CAT Of The Quarter: The Effect of Procedural Justice on the Acceptance of Organizational Change

A Critically Appraised Topic (CAT) is a concise summary (2–3 pages max.) of the research evidence on a practical question/problem with short, bottom-line recommendations. The CAT in this newsletter was conducted by Leonard Millenaar, a management consultant and a student on the postgraduate change management program at the VU University Amsterdam.

As a change consultant, I am expected to contribute to the realization of organizational change. The outcomes of change can be both positive and negative for people, depending on the type of change and the specific individual or group affected by that change. In both situations, but particularly when the type of change has predominantly negative outcomes (i.e. lay-offs), I think it is of the utmost importance that the change process is neat and just. I am curious what impact procedural justice has on the way that people perceive the outcomes of organizational change.”

You can download Leonard’s CAT here >>

Missed a past newsletter? Find it here >>

A friend or colleague would like to receive this newsletter too? They can subscribe right here >>