Categorizing Categorization Research: Review, Integration, and Future Directions

Vergne, JP, & T. Wry. 2014. Categorizing Categorization Research: Review, Integration, and Future Directions. Journal of Management Studies, 51(1): 56-94.

39 Pages Posted: 8 Jun 2013 Last revised: 2 Jan 2015

See all articles by Jean-Philippe Vergne

Jean-Philippe Vergne

University College London - School of Management

Tyler Wry

University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School, Management Department

Date Written: 2014

Abstract

This paper offers a systematic review of the literature on organizational categories and categorization published in the last fourteen years (1999-2012). After identifying a core of roughly 100 papers on categories that appeared in management, organization, and sociology journals, we classified them based on several key dimensions, and analyzed a few trends within the categorization literature. Our most surprising finding may be the fact that until recently, there was no mutual recognition of the existence of a distinct ‘a literature on categories’ despite the wealth of published material on the topic. After summarizing some core theoretical features of that emergent literature, we suggest several areas of research that could further enrich it in the future.

Keywords: categories, categorization, classification, organizational ecology, audience, legitimacy, institutions, agency, review

JEL Classification: L00, M00

Suggested Citation

Vergne, Jean-Philippe and Wry, Tyler, Categorizing Categorization Research: Review, Integration, and Future Directions (2014). Vergne, JP, & T. Wry. 2014. Categorizing Categorization Research: Review, Integration, and Future Directions. Journal of Management Studies, 51(1): 56-94. , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2276436

Jean-Philippe Vergne (Contact Author)

University College London - School of Management ( email )

Gower Street
London, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

Tyler Wry

University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School, Management Department ( email )

The Wharton School
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6370
United States

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