The most widespread book on case study research is by Robert Yin, first published 45 years ago (and later revised), and routinely and often carelessly referenced in almost every article and dissertation. Evert has long been dissatisfied with its relevance to business and management research and asks the question:  "Has the use of case study research improved over the years?" His answer is: "No, not in any major way."

Case Theory in Business and Management
Case Theory in Business and Management

The book consists of two parts: Think Right and Do Right. The central theme is the discovery of case theory, in which complexity is central, meaning among other things: 1. the grave mistake to claim that quantitative methodology, based on far-going data reduction and lack of validity and relevance, is superior; 2. poor theory, limted to the substantive and mid-range theory zones, disregarding general theory; 3. the necesssity of both/and, (discarding the mainstream either/or); both explicit knowledge (based on what is traditionally called science) and tacit knowledge, i.e. intuition, experience, common sense, wisdom etc.; 4. access to data gathered through quesitonnaires and personal interviews is mostly superficial and of low quality whereas case theory recommends mixed methods with management action research as the most advanced.

In the Foreword to the book Professor John Van Maanen of MIT, USA, concludes: "In short, the case for case theory as argued, presented and illustrated by Evert Gummesson is a compelling and formidable one."

About Evert Gummesson

Evert Gummesson
Evert Gummesson, Professor Emeritus at SBS

After graduation from the Stockholm School of Economics, Evert first worked as a product manager and next in a large international management consultancy. Parallel with this he read sociology and took master courses at SBS, the purpose being to stay updated in his consultancy work. Professors Solveig Wikström and Lars Persson asked him when he was going to write a PhD thesis, still working as a practitioner. In 1977 he presented the first book in Scandinavia on services, "Marketing and Purchasing of Professional Services", and got his PhD. Some years later he started to work part time at SBS and also became Professor at the Gothenburg School of Economics and Karlstad University. In 1990 he got a chair at SBS focused on services which he kept until becoming Emeritus in 2002.