Programmes
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Research engagement

Internal and external dynamics of professional services firms

Professional Service Firms programme conducts research into the internal and external dynamics of professional service firms.

Although our primary focus is on the management of such firms, and the issues faced by people working within them, PSF activities are also concerned with the governance of professional service firms more generally, addressing policy issues of concern to both clients and regulators. We are interested in the history and evolution of PSFs and their impact on business and society.

We are concerned with the professional firm as a distinct organisational form and the impact of this distinctiveness on strategic processes, and processes of innovation and change. Recently we have been looking into the offshoring and outsourcing professional work which has occasioned new organisational structures and systems.

Finally, we research the development and management of professional expertise and ethics and examine social and formal processes by which these are nurtured and regulated.

In-house legal practice

Research by Professor Mari Sako, at Saïd Business School, based on interviews with 52 general counsel in the UK and US from May 2010 to January 2011, reveals how in-house legal practice and the legal market are changing.

Patents in business

The use of patents in non-technological areas, i.e., business methods, has been largely unexplored. Is it always feasible to patent a business method? What is the value of such patents to the business and to the economy? What are the key issues in patenting a business method?

These questions have been at the core of research by Dr George Chondrakis.