The purpose of this special issue is to explore quantitative and qualitative research methods in international management by considering both new methods and new ways of using traditional methods. New research methods in management may emerge in response to the definition of a problem or the research conducted by other scholars. The emergence of new tools, techniques and software as well as changes in the environment under study that require new sources of information also offer opportunities to develop and employ new methods.
Many researchers believe that good theory followed by bad methods hinders their ability to create theory by generalising findings to other temporal and geographical contexts (Lewin, 1945; Tsoukas, 1989). For example, real-world relationships are often asymmetrical, and although multiple regression analysis is effective at identifying symmetric relationships, it sometimes fails to capture relationships of asymmetry. Qualitative comparative analysis can help overcome this problem (Fiss, 2011; Mendel and Korjani, 2013). Each management method is a lens that allows us to interpret one or more forms of management and to seek a variety of solutions to new or existing problems. Hence, a critical review of these methods and careful analysis of the resulting conclusions is crucial. Management in different economies, sectors and businesses depends on the results arising from different methods.
Scientific research uses different quantitative and/or qualitative methods to provide different answers to problems. In management, the language used in research is important to enable communication between academia and researchers during both data collection and the dissemination of findings. Contrasting different studies (or even the same study) using different methods reduces the gap between theory and practice because it leads to the generalisation of findings and ensures that the theory can become more widely used.
We welcome management research papers that present new solutions using quantitative approaches, qualitative analysis as an alternative to traditional quantitative methods, and examples and applications of new methods. We aim to provide high-quality empirical evidence using multiple methods and to present papers that discuss different empirical perspectives.
Papers that combine different research methods are particularly welcome. We are open to imaginative and interesting ideas that fit within the scope of this call for papers.
Although a description of the method is optional, its empirical applications and the potential methodological advancements that demonstrate its usefulness in management research and practice should be emphasised, as should the method’s limitations.
Suitable topics include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Perspectives and techniques in management research
- Quantitative and qualitative methodological proposals by researchers
- Comparisons between quantitative and qualitative methods
- Consolidation and application of the most relevant methods and criticism of certain aspects of other methods (e.g. their implications or even their fundamental proposals)
- New methods (if applicable) and new forms and applications of traditional methods in management research
- Tools and techniques in content analysis, including text analysis software applied to different settings and topics
- Predictive validation testing of models using hold-out samples and testing for causal asymmetry in previous studies
- Forms of hybridisation between qualitative and quantitative techniques in management research
- Differences in methodology and concepts when comparing approaches across different empirical studies
- Discrepancies, criticism and debate of papers published in refereed journals
- Other new qualitative research methods or techniques and new ways of applying traditional quantitative methods in management research
Manuscripts due by: 31 March, 2018
Fiss, P.C. (2011). Building better causal theories: A fuzzy set approach to typologies in organization research. Academy of Management Journal, Vol. 54, 393-420.
Lewin, K. (1945). The research center for group dynamics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Sociometry, Vol. 8, 126-135.
Mendel, J.M. and Korjani, M.M. (2013). Theoretical aspects of Fuzzy Set Qualitative Comparative Analysis (fsQCA). Information Sciences, Vol. 237, 137-161.
Tsoukas, H. (1989). The validity of ideographic research explanations. Academy of Management Review, Vol. 14, 551-561.