Debate has persisted over the raison d'être of the Information Systems (IS) discipline. There are many facets to this complex issue, including two closely related ones, namely rigour and relevance in IS research, and the relationship between IS academics and practitioners. The aim of this paper is to further explore and affirm the practitioner perspective of relevance, and to develop a shared understanding of improved models of the academic-practitioner relationship. This understanding develops through a series of three perspectives, viz: the literature, the practitioners, and the academics' reflection. Mixed methods are employed for the data collection, including structured interviews, a focus group and a survey. The findings highlight the important role that stakeholders play, with both practitioners and academics desirous of a closer association. The medical model appears to have the most promise in bridging the gap in the relationship.