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Journal cover: Benchmarking: An International Journal

Benchmarking: An International Journal

ISSN: 1463-5771
Previously published as: Benchmarking for Quality Management & Technology

Online from: 1999

Subject Area: Managing Quality

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Benchmarking of thesis research: a case study

Document Information:
Title:Benchmarking of thesis research: a case study
Author(s):Mohammad Shahalizadeh, (Department of Productivity and System Management – Industrial Engineering, Islamic Azad University, South Tehran Branch (IAU-STB), Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran), Grannaz Amirjamshidi, (Department of Technology Management and Economics, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden), Solmaz Shahalizadeh, (Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden)
Citation:Mohammad Shahalizadeh, Grannaz Amirjamshidi, Solmaz Shahalizadeh, (2009) "Benchmarking of thesis research: a case study", Benchmarking: An International Journal, Vol. 16 Iss: 1, pp.103 - 123
Keywords:Benchmarking, Iran, Knowledge management, Sweden, Theses, Universities
Article type:Case study
DOI:10.1108/14635770910936540 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Acknowledgements:Mohammad Shahalizadeh is grateful to Professor A. Dubois for facilitating access to studied master theses reports. Thanks also to Islamic Azad University, South Tehran Branch, and Research Deputy for supporting this research.

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate the process of the thesis research in the industrial engineering related master's programmes in Chalmers University of Technology for benchmarking implementation in Islamic Azad University, South Tehran Branch (IAU-STB), taking into consideration the different conditions of two universities and respective countries of Sweden and Iran.

Design/methodology/approach – In this research, case study strategy was employed. In total, 17 thesis reports from 2003 to 2006 and other related published/web-based documents were studied to explore the theses' execution procedure, research method and report organization. To gain primary data, some interviews were carried out. Qualitative research method, along with descriptive statistical method was used to illustrate structural points.

Findings – The results of the study help to develop group work in thesis execution, to identify the role of qualitative strategy in industrial engineering research, and to adopt a flexible approach in organization of thesis report provided that some mandatory regulations are followed. In addition, it helps to build research-oriented inter disciplinary departments vs traditional education-oriented departments on the basis of the requirements of ongoing socio-economic processes in national economy.

Research limitations/implications – The acquired knowledge has been partly adapted and adopted by departments of industrial engineering in IAU-STB. The main implication is the need to explore how the entire industrial engineering departments (IEDs) in Iranian universities can efficiently and effectively adapt and adopt such knowledge for thesis research.

Practical implications – This work provides effective assistance for IEDs in Iranian universities embarking on their benchmarking journey on thesis research.

Originality/value – This study represents a knowledge gap and offers practical help to IEDs in Iranian universities to leverage the skills and expertise of their faculty members together with the talents of their students and consequently to maintain and enhance their thesis research capability.

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