In November 2013, Middlesex University Dubai hosted the Second International Conference on Emerging Research Paradigms in Business and Social Sciences (ERPBBS) which was one of our largest and most successful research events. Held at the Address Hotel (Dubai Mall), this three-day event saw over 180 delegates from more than 100 universities present a wide range of cutting edge research papers. Building upon the success of the First ERPBSS conference in 2011, this unique multi-disciplinary event provided a platform for academics from a range of different fields to discuss new concepts, progressive methodologies, and innovative practices.
One of our objectives in hosting this conference was to remind the academic world, and the world at large, of ways to proactively address economic and social transformation. It is our belief that knowledge does not suddenly change dramatically, but slowly emerges and undergoes an incremental process of invention and re-invention. Therefore, it is in this epistemological context that research paradigms also materialise and become accountable to academic inspection, introspection, and deconstruction.
We were thrilled to have two eminent keynote speakers. Professor Mark Saunders (Professor in Business Research Methods, University of Surrey, UK) discussed “The (re)emergence of mixed methods research: Researching sensitively without sensitizing”. The second day of the conference was opened by Professor Louise Morley (Professor of Education, University of Sussex, UK) who gave a keynote presentation on “Researching the future: Towards an inclusive global knowledge economy”.
Over the three days of the conference there were 35 sessions, each accommodating 3 or 4 presentations. All sessions (including the last session on the last day!) were well-attended by delegates and it was pleasing to see that the audiences traversed several disciplines. This was the very aim of the conference – to offer a sumptuous, multi-disciplinary fare to the delegates. The proceedings of the conference, which were published on a CD, offered a invaluable and unique caché of research done by our delegates. The conference gala dinner at Al Qasr Restaurant in Dubai Marine Club, was an excellent opportunity for conference delegates to network, relax, and to enjoy great food and entertainment. During the evening, the conference awards for best papers in each academic track, and for best student paper, were presented.
In many ways, the 2011 and 2013 conferences were siblings and both equally excellent. We hope to continue this run of success in the 2015 conference.