A Handbook for Scholars and Practitioners
Chapter Fourteen: Providing Research Services for Clients
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Providing Research Services for Clients
FRANKLIN J. BOSTER
Michigan State University
“Serious academics write journal articles, not books. Serious academics write data-based papers, not essays…” And so the conversation would go as Nick Henry and I sat together chuckling over lunch. I was a young assistant professor at Arizona State University (ASU), and Nick was the Dean of our college, the College of Public Programs. The fact that both Nick and I grew up in and around St. Louis, Missouri meant, among other things, that we rooted for the same baseball team, knew or knew about some of the same people, could argue whether Phil the Gorilla or Blondie the Python was a bigger attraction at the St. Louis Zoo, and could voice reasoned opinions on the merits and limitations of restaurants located in the Central West End. That explained why a Dean would have lunch with a lowly assistant professor. The game developed from these lunches, and we played it almost every time that we lunched together. The goal was to generate a new statement that characterized the stereotypical view of what was considered a “serious academic” at that time. Had we both stayed at ASU, and had we continued the game, one of the statements might have been “Serious academics do NOT consult.” Of course, we were being facetious. Nick wrote books, and good ones. I wrote some essays. Back then, however, I would have agreed...
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