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date: 17 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explicates the role that organizational culture plays in the ways that evidence is used to inform management practice. Both culture and the process of making management practice evidence-based are multifaceted. Drawing on various literatures, we offer a cultural framework to help one assess how and why evidence-based management (EBMgt) is or is not used in a particular organization. We characterize culture as a complex, but only partly coherent, set of patterns shared by a group, where a pattern consists of mutually supporting beliefs, values, and practices. Patterns vary in what they are about, how broad, connected, and coherent they are, as well as how important they are to a given culture. Each of these factors affects how easy it is to change a pattern and change culture. We frame EBMgt as a pattern, outline its core beliefs, values, and practices, and then explain which cultural patterns are necessary in an organization if the EBMgt pattern is to take root. We go on to identify eight ways in which culture and EBMgt affect each other, and conclude by suggesting steps to implement EBMgt in organizations, research programs, and classrooms.

Keywords: culture, evidence-based practice, belief justification, mental models, evidence-based organizations

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