University of Hertfordshire

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)125-144
JournalJournal of Business-To-Business Marketing
Volume22
Issue1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2015

Abstract

Purpose: The aim of this article is to examine the development of the book review section of the Journal of Business-to-Business Marketing relative to changes in the publication industry.

Methodology/approach: The analysis compared descriptive categories and content analysis of the book reviews and book review essays across four time periods. The content analysis was conducted using Leximancer, an automatic text analytic tool that codes according to the co-occurrence of main concepts within the text. The time periods relate to the journal volumes: 1–5, 6–10, 11–15, and 16–21. These time periods were tagged within Leximancer indicating the differences and commonalities of the book review content between each time period.

Findings: The results indicated that the number of book reviews has fallen over the journal’s life. The following reasons influencing the falling number of book reviews were proposed: changing promotion/tenure criteria for academics over the last 20 years, the different attitudes between academics and practitioners in relation to book content, financial pressures placed on academic publishers, and the changing proportion of the university library budget allocated to procuring books. The results also indicated that the topics covered in the book reviews have changed over the four time periods. These changes are thought to be influenced by the changing “hot topics” business marketing academics are interested in and topics preferred by book publishers.

Implications: Although the publishing industry and academic reward systems continue to change, books will continue to be an important outlet for the dissemination of knowledge and academics will continue to publish books. The broader publishing environment and discipline specific trends should be considered when determining publishing approaches. Books offer an alternative avenue for reaching a broad academic audience (rather than those who only read specialized journals) and academics passionate about their research will be motivated to share with a broad audience.

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