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‘To Be orNot to Be’ – ‘Top’ or ‘Tenure Track’ Journals?

Abstract

The top journals of the marketing discipline tend to be identified and ranked mainly based upon two foundations such as: citations and scholarly perceptions. The objective of this paper is to describe other aspects to be considered in the foundations of top journal rankings. A conceptual discussion of journal rankings is provided. It is limited to a selection of socalled top journals belonging mostly to the field of mainstream marketing. The top marketing journals in focus no longer appear to be the preferred forum or outlet for ground- breaking and challenging themes from leading marketing scholars worldwide. On the contrary, they appear to have become an arena for US-affiliated scholars on tenure-tracks. The possible tenure-track arena in the top marketing journals in focus may explain the frequent absence of reputable and widely recognized marketing scholars; these are often dedicated to cutting edge themes and scholarly efforts beyond contemporary knowledge and wisdom. The top marketing journals may not be seen worldwide as the top ones for non-US scholars. Scholars worldwide may consider them rather to be part of the domestic scholarly structure in the US, and of less relevance to their own research community. The question is raised whether some of the top marketing journals have mainly become tenure-track journals. Key words: marketing, journal, citation, ranking, discipline.