A historical comparative perspective on theory development in organization studies

Qian Li, Scott Seyrek

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Theory is an integral part of research. Recently, scholars have been concerned with simple consumption of theory in organization studies. Echoing this concern, we conducted an historical analysis of theory development in the field of management and organization. We commenced our inquiry by reading social theories and searching articles that cited the theorists in institutional theory and organization studies. Through juxtaposing social theories and organization literature, we intend to decipher the historical trajectory of social theory importation and domestication in institutional theory and organization studies. We found that organization scholars “domesticated” social theories by modifying and altering the meanings of social theory to cater to a more orthodox research agenda; the translation and transformation, to some extent, contribute to the limitations of institutional theory. We argue that in order to advance theory, future researchers ought to understand how meanings change when importing and domesticating social theories historically, thereby opening up possibilities of theorizing in the future. Implications are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAcademy of Management Annual Meeting Proceedings 2016
EditorsGuclu Atinc
PublisherAcademy of Management
Volume2016
Edition1
ISBN (Electronic)2151-6561
ISBN (Print)0065-0668
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2017

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  • Research Output

    A historical comparative perspective on theory development in organization studies

    Li, Q. & Seyrek, S., 9 Aug 2016.

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

    Prizes

    Ronald B. Shuman Award for Best Graduate Student Paper

    Li, Qian (Recipient) & Scott Seyrek (Recipient), 2016

    Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)

  • Cite this

    Li, Q., & Seyrek, S. (2017). A historical comparative perspective on theory development in organization studies. In G. Atinc (Ed.), Academy of Management Annual Meeting Proceedings 2016 (1 ed., Vol. 2016). Academy of Management. https://doi.org/10.5465/ambpp.2016.10412abstract