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  White Space Thought Leadership Rankings finds gap narrowing between the top consulting firms and the rest.

Top five thought leadership consultancies unchanged

A new White Space Thought Leadership Rankings Report has found that whilst there has been quite a lot of movement by consulting firms in the middle and lower echelons of the rankings during the second half of 2012, the position of the top five has remained unchanged and the battle for supremacy in thought leadership appears to have paused.

The report, which also publishes for the first time its top ten rankings for each of its four evaluation criteria (Resilience, Differentiation, Appeal, and Prompting Action), found that combined across these areas, The Boston Consulting Group (1st), Booz & Company (2nd), IBM (3rd), Roland Berger (4th) and PwC (5th) remain top of the rankings.

The report says that the gap between the top firms and the next group has narrowed because of two reasons:

1. While the top five firms are capable of publishing excellent material, all have seen a slight decrease in their score. This is partly because it is hard to score well across all four criteria. For instance, well-researched articles can score badly on ‘appeal’ because the authors haven’t been able to draw out memorable conclusions.

2. Secondly, a number of firms which have historically featured in the middle of the White Space Rankings (or even further down) have moved up, in some cases substantially. The report found that Deloitte jumped from 12th to 8th reversing its gentle downward trajectory over the last few years. The newly-launched Deloitte University Press partly accounts for this: creating a new, sharper window on its thinking has helped raise the bar in quality too. Aon Hewitt has made even greater progress, up from 21st position to 11th as a result of focusing its efforts on topics where it has something intelligent and interesting to say.

Fiona Czerniawska, Joint Managing Director at Source Information Services and founder of White Space said: “Although the position of the top five has remained unchanged and the battle for supremacy in thought leadership appears to have paused, we predict this respite will be temporary. The gap between the top firms and those beneath them is closing and somebody’s going to have to make a big move if it’s not going to be closed completely.

Fiona Czerniawska continued: “The reasons why consulting firms produce thought leadership vary: some may be seeking to influence governments, while others want to sell services; some may be trying to build an overall brand, others more specific propositions. In some contexts ‘appeal’ might appear to be the most important criteria, but in others it might be ‘resilience’. For that reason we’ve published for the first time, tables which list the top ten firms for each of our criteria – and they make interesting reading.”

White Space includes thought leadership from about 30 of the world’s leading consulting firms, all categorised and searchable by service, sector and geography. In addition to White Space ratings reports, there are quick links to some of the best thought leadership relevant to various different services and sectors.

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