Conflating Antecedents and Formative Indicators: A Comment on Aguirre-Urreta and Marakas
Information Systems Research, Vol. 25, No. 4, pp. 780-784, 2014
Posted: 14 Jun 2017
Date Written: December 18, 2013
Aguirre-Urreta and Marakas [Aguirre-Urreta MI, Marakas GM (2014) Research note — Partial least squares and models with formatively specified endogenous constructs: A cautionary note. Inform. Systems Res. 25(4):761–778] aim to evaluate the performance of partial least squares (PLS) path modeling when estimating models with formative endogenous constructs, but their ability to reach valid conclusions is compromised by three major flaws in their research design. First, their population data generation model does not represent “formative measurement” as researchers generally understand that term. Second, their design involves a PLS path model that is misspecified with respect to their population model. Third, although their aim is to estimate a composite-based PLS path model, their design uses simulation data generated via a factor analytic procedure. In consequence of these flaws, Aguirre-Urreta and Marakas’ (2014) study does not support valid inference about the behavior of PLS path modeling with respect to endogenous formatively measured constructs.
Keywords: Formative indicators, Partial least squares, Endogenous constructs
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