Questions 1: “Topic Choice” Define what the Editor of the Academy of Management Journal means by a “grand challenge”. Identify a peer reviewed article of your choice which is an example of a “grand challenge”, explaining why you believe it to be so.

Questions 1:
“Topic Choice”
Define what the Editor of the Academy of Management Journal means by a “grand challenge”.
Identify a peer reviewed article of your choice which is an example of a “grand challenge”,
explaining why you believe it to be so.

Question 2:
Explain what is meant by “knowledge recombination” and give an example of a novel peer
reviewed article that demonstrates this concept. Explain.

Question 3:
“Changing Practice”
According to the editor of AJM good research should be actionable – it should have impact.
Identify a peer reviewed article that has resulted in a change of practice for either industry or
government. Explain why this research was able to do this.

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Grand challenge is defined as difficult but important problems which are formulated to encourage innovation that would solve the problems. The objectives of a study with a grand challenge framework harness technology, science, and innovation to provide solutions to problems that apprehend public imagination. In the selection of a topic of study, consideration should be made on whether it contributes or confront grand challenge (Colquitt & George 2011, p.432). The basic principles of a striking challenge are the development of opinions and initiatives to tackle the identified problems. The author of Academy of Management Journals (AMJ) explains that the topics selected reflecting grand challenge contain major goals as the eradication of problems such as eliminating poverty, disease, and hunger.

Grand challenges are continually identified in many fields including medicine, engineering, and natural sciences. AMJ encourages the selection of a research topic that provides insights for into the incrimination of grand challenges for incorporation in organizations including the concepts, processes, contingencies and new causal logic of performing and managing grand challenges in the society. A topic choice is needful to acknowledge problems and provide alternatives to the solutions (Colquitt & George 2011, p.432). An effective topic chosen carefully should not introduce a new criterion. Rather, the topic should build or conduct continuity to other people’s work. Importantly, even though a particular topic builds on prior work, the severity of grand challenge varies across different studies. Hence, there is uniqueness in every topic that is selected.

Framing a topic with the grand challenge is important in clear explanation of the solutions to be provided (Colquitt & George 2011, p.432). Furthermore, it enables the author to be accurate in conducting the study. Use of grand challenges can cause a change in approaches to handling challenges in the society. However, the insights provided should connect with existing literature. The author of AMJ explains that the authors developing topics with a grand challenge framework should pay attention to the anticipated outcomes such as social good, social-emotional and physical well-being, equity, productivity, employment, and wealth creation.


Gutberlet’s study portrays a good example of a grand challenge. The study entails development of poverty eradication strategy by the adoption of informal and cooperative recycling. The group of people addressed by the study is the poor people living in urban areas in Brazil whose main source of income is achieved by recycling of items by collecting garbage selectively. The survival strategy of the people is by recycling of solid wastes (Gutberlet 2012, p.21) They collect the recyclable materials from household waste that is disposed of in the streets, from businesses, offices, or from landfills and irregular dumps. The informal recyclers store the materials at home which poses a health hazard to them. After the selective collection of the garbage, they separate and commercialize the recyclable materials. The recyclable materials collected include beverage containers, plastics, scrap metals, paper, and cardboard.

The recent development of energy development in Brazil has been viewed as a threat to the informal recyclers’ livelihoods. Incineration fails to generate income, yields environmental contamination, and creates competition to other methods of waste management. The research supports the idea that organized recycling of materials brings about economic, social, and environmental benefits (Gutberlet 2012, p. 23) It also has the long-term effect of poverty eradication. However, most of the people are economically and socially excluded accompanied by subject to poverty-related health problems.

The problems experienced by the informal recyclers

The work is prone to challenges, which are risks to the people. The informal recyclers are more likely to acquire occupational health problems which are related to the collection of the materials. There exist both chemical and biological risks brought about by problems related to posture, contact with contaminated materials, injuries, and problems with emotional well-being. Firstly, the informal recyclers are subjected to health risks as infections might be acquired in the course of the work (Gutberlet 2012, p.24) Secondly, the people are frequently involved in accidents and exploitation. Besides, they have low living standards as they are poorly paid by the buyers of the materials. Additionally, the recyclers are considered informal and sometimes are subject to maltreatment in the society.

The risks that the recyclers are exposed to are attributed to the inadequacy of public waste management concepts in Brazil. The team use approaches that lack information on public environmental education and awareness. The approaches also lack opportunities for effective communication between the informal recyclers, the general public and the government (Gutberlet 2012, p.24). The list of problems experienced by these people propels the need to provide insights into the possible solutions available. There is a great need to improve the working and health conditions of the people. The propelling need causes innovation in the research sector to in an attempt to curb the problems (Gotel et al. 2012, p.245).

proposed solutions to the grand challenge

The author proposes several alternatives which contribute to solving the list of problems. To begin with, Gutberlet reasons that organizations of the recyclers in cooperative, social enterprises, and associations would provide opportunities for human development and social inclusions. The development would be achieved by promotion of meaningful work, the increment of the people’s self-esteem, and improving their working and living conditions.

Projects on environmental health and education should be initialized so that the informal recyclers and the general population may develop insights regarding the topic. The knowledge would cause positive impacts as the recyclers would be able to conduct their activities with the minimal risks. Also, the general public would be able to promote activities that preserve the environment and to develop a positive perception of the informal recyclers (Gutberlet 2012, p.28) Rewarding the informal recyclers for their services and considering the environmental benefits acquired from their work curbs the Millennium Development Goal of poverty eradication. Therefore, adoption of participatory waste management should be considered because it has significance in conservation and maintenance of the environment.

Consequently, Gutberlet’s research is a good example of grand challenge where problems are identified in the society. He points out the problems faced by informal recyclers in the community. The list of problems propels the need for innovation which in turn results in curbing the problems.


Knowledge recombination is defined as the unification of knowledge between two disciplines or literature. The recombination exhibits novelty in selecting a topic. Novelty emphasizes the quality of originality or being new in the development of a topic. Novelty of a study topic can be measured by evaluating if conducting the study would cause any impact on the literature available, or it would be repeating prior work (Colquitt & George 2011, p.433).

Often, when knowledge recombination is used to develop novel topics, results are obtained from new insights which might not be articulated for earlier. Organizations use knowledge recombination to generate new ideas. By exploring new technology and engaging innovation, the firms create new solutions. The new ideas are merged with existing ones in the organizations for better results (Colquitt & George 2011, p.434). Effective novelty can be achieved in studies by the adoption of completely new topics and solutions by overcoming: preference of the familiar solutions over the unfamiliar, opting for the mature solutions rather than the newly invented, and going for existing approaches rather than new ones.

Firstly, choosing a familiar topic will result in conducting a study that has been carried out before. The insights provided by the research are most likely to be already in existence. Hence, the study won’t end up in capturing people’s attention. Secondly, Selection of a topic that is very complex might be interpreted as the introduction of a concept which is inessential. The topic chosen should be easily understood such that the variety of the audience might understand its essence (Colquitt & George 2011, p.434). Additionally, an effective topic should exhibit a phenomenon that is adjacent to existing approaches rather than completely new phenomenon. Hence ideally, the topic should avoid maturity, familiarity, and nearness traps as much as possible.


Dafforn et al. uses knowledge recombination in the study by selecting a topic and contextualizing the research in more than one disciplines. The research combines ecological principals with the design, planning, and operation of artificial structures of marine. The topic covers the discipline of engineering partially by covering structural designs (Dafforn 2015, p. 84). On the other hand, the study also partially involves natural science by focusing on the ecology.

The development of the studies by the authors is propelled by the consideration of the relationship of marine operations and ecology. There exists a tendency of development of artificial structure in marine environments which causes extensive ecological consequences. The fact propels the need to research on the impacts of the combination of ecological principles with design and use of artificial structures. The research will lead to escalating marine urbanization (Dafforn 2015, p.86). The study emphasizes the idea that marine developments could be designed in a way that there is a reduction of negative ecological impacts exhibited while promoting ecosystem services.

The research focuses on construction and maintenance of marine structure in a way that there are no negative impacts caused by the ecology. Defense structures are constructed along the coast to protect the coastlines from getting eroded by the water. If the adverse impacts of the ecological system are not addressed, they become more critical whereby they result to stormier seas which accelerate economic advancement in the coastal regions. Designing multifunctional artificial structures in these regions lead to fragmentation and loss of sedimentary habitats which are later replaced with rocky habitats that become colonized by marine animals and algae (Dafforn 2015, p. 87). The author states that use of engineering knowledge to construct the structures is an incredible achievement. However, there has been a less extensive investigation on the ecological consequences in these regions.

The authors provide a theoretical scheme for developing substitute systems usable for several purposes. Knowledge recombination ensures novelty of the research (Bartunek & Egri 2012 p.244). The study is unique and multisource which communicates the originality of the work. Additionally, organizations are more likely to fund such research with the kind of novelty with knowledge recombination (Gruber et al. 2013, p.840). The reason behind it is because studies with knowledge recombination contain rigor and relevance as the insights provided solve multiple problems.

Consequently, knowledge recombination is frequently used in research. The idea involves a combination of existing knowledge with new knowledge or use of knowledge acquired from different disciplines (Gruber et al. 2013, p.843). Combining knowledge elements from different disciplines is a view of innovation. Novelty is shown to in knowledge recombination in several aspects. First, novelty is seen in the sense that the research is original. Secondly, novelty is exhibited in the fact that there is no extreme maturity of the topic of research. The author uses knowledge recombination in the study on ecological basis for design of manmade structures that are multifunctional. The author engages two disciplines in the research whereby engineering is used hand in hand with science. The research aim and determine areas of convergence between the two disciplines.

Knowledge recombination is important is an innovative way of conducting research. It enables an author to tackle the topic in different dimensions. The aspect of knowledge recombination attracts many people to the adoption of the notion presented in the research. Besides organizations are also interested in research exhibiting knowledge recombination and are even willing to fund the project. The research exhibits knowledge recombination in the aspect of connecting more than one disciplines and converging them to conduct a single study. The knowledge of either discipline is used to produce a comprehensive and relevant study. The two disciplines interrelate well as designing of structures in marine regions has effects on the ecology.


Effective research should afford a ground or have subject to an action. It should present an opportunity for a change of usual practice for the better. The research should provide alternatives for adoption in organizational practice (Colquitt & George 2011, p.434). Changing practice provided by particular research should be original in the sense that it does not already exist in prior research.

The author of AMJ explains several ways in which management research can be actionable. Firstly, the study should provide counterintuitive insights in the sense that the solution alternatives provided stand out from common expectations (Colquitt & George 2011, p.434). Secondly, the study should outline the impacts anticipated after the adoption of the new practices. Thirdly, the research should explain any existing inconsistencies that can accompany the adoption of insights provided.

Consequences of actionability of the research should be explained (Bartunek & Egri 2012 p.245). Additionally, better results of actionable research are acquired when a theory is developed to explain the concept. What’s more, an actionable study should develop a famous phenomenon that encourages more research and practice on the matter (Colquitt & George 2011, p.435). It’s possible for a research to be actionable when its framework has a basis of grand challenge, and it exhibits novelty of the topic. Effective research should contain insights which are applicable in the real world so that it might constitute to solving the challenges existing in an organization.


Adoption of changes is necessary in approaching the challenges that exist in populations that are excluded socially. The changes adopted should address problems that relate to their physical, and mental well-being. The improvement adopted should enhance the ability of such people to meet with their needs. Social change can be achieved through things like reduction poverty through eradication of inequality and economic empowerment among others; so as the people can meet their basic needs (Werner 2009, p.545). Achievement of these goals via the public sector is frequently impossible. In achieving such beneficial initiatives which fully addresses their problems, long term solutions must be sought to provide the necessary resources for change and to integrate the advancement into sustainable activities. The research incorporates the private department partnerships and initiatives to cause positive impacts of the socially exclusive populations. The initiatives and partnerships are called corporate social responsibility (CSR).

Werner’s article exhibits a ground for change of practices resulting in positive outcomes. The research provides insights which cause change upon adoption. The research majors on the development of public sector initiatives and partnerships with an aim to address social exclusivity in Bangladesh. The research is propelled by the need to decrease exclusion of marginalized people in social aspects and to boost social and economic capabilities (Werner 2009, p.545). The private sector is identified as the ideal driver of the exclusionary process.

The project involves Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives which conduct most of the activities required to achieve the objectives (Bhattacharya et al. 2009, p.260). The author pictures CSR as capable of causing an impact on social status, boosting people’s potential, and provision of access to goods and services to the socially-excluded people. The project is conducted with an aim to reduce social exclusion among these people and improve social and economic capabilities to reduce the exclusion.

Impacts of the research to the socially-excluded marginalized population

There were the intended outcomes of the project. To begin with, the project aimed at improvement of job capabilities and opportunities for the less fortunate people in the society. Additionally, there was an intention to create provision of healthcare services to the marginalized communities especially the women. The research, through the project conducted by CSR, impacted success on the development and inclusivity of the marginalized people living in Bangladesh.

The target, which was on community development, was successful (Werner 2009, p.545). One of the methods they used to cause change was encouraging the small-scale businesses in the marginalized areas. The project achieved this by providing capital to the residents and giving them business ideas to work on. Many people have benefited from health projects whereby their health status is on the check. There is the achievement of creating jobs opportunities for the disabled. Besides, because the disabled are highly discriminated in marginalized regions of Bangladesh, the program goes beyond the provision of jobs to these people. They further provide housing for the disabled due to the unwillingness of the family members to accommodate them even after undergoing rehabilitation process.

CSR design of benefiting socially-excluded people

The CSR program exhibits several characteristics which are the success determiners. Firstly, The CSR plays an important role in the operations carried out with the aim to aid the socially-excluded (Bhattacharya et al. 2009, p.270). Secondly, CSR’s partnerships with other organizations such as NGO’s and donor enabled corporations enables the success of their projects (Werner 2009, p. 545). Additionally, their main goal in the program for the socially-excluded is to establish a win for win whereby they match skills, resources, and capabilities.

Consequently, an effective research should have an effect of changing practice. To start with, the topic selected should be actionable. The insights provided in the research should serve as solutions to the problems at hand. They should be applicable and of value added to the organization or the government. The initiatives to be adopted should be of benefit to the society by solving the problems faced by the general population. Werner’s research causes impacts in providing solutions to the socially excluded people.

The research incorporates CSR which carries out initiatives to help the marginalized people who are socially-excluded to acquire development both socially and economically. The study can cause impact by the adoption of applicable solutions which are carried out with the aim of accomplishing the goals of the research. The applicable solutions engage the CSR initiatives which are used to help the socially-excluded people to develop both socially and economically. The initiative creates self-help groups and encourages the marginalized people to be innovative. The project also creates job opportunities which help many people. The impacts caused by the research are still felt up to date in Bangladesh.






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Bhattacharya, C.B., Korschun, D. and Sen, S., 2009. Strengthening stakeholder-company relationships through mutually beneficial corporate social responsibility initiatives. Journal of Business ethics85(2), pp.257-272.

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Dafforn, K.A., Glasby, T.M., Airoldi, L., Rivero, N.K., Mayer-Pinto, M. and Johnston, E.L., 2015. Marine urbanization: an ecological framework for designing multifunctional artificial structures. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment13(2), pp.82-90.

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Werner, W.J., 2009. Corporate social responsibility initiatives are addressing social exclusion in Bangladesh. Journal of health, population, and nutrition27(4), p.545.