Binned Scatterplots: A Simple Tool to Make Research Easier and Better

Forthcoming, Strategic Management Journal

31 Pages Posted: 22 Oct 2018 Last revised: 13 Apr 2020

See all articles by Evan Starr

Evan Starr

University of Maryland Robert H Smith School of Business

Brent D. Goldfarb

University of Maryland - Robert H. Smith School of Business

Date Written: April 12, 2020

Abstract

We seek to diffuse a graphical tool—binned scatterplots—which we argue can dramatically improve the quality and speed of research in strategic management. In contrast to the current practice of showing plots of predicted values, binned scatterplots graph the non-parametric relationship between two variables, either unconditionally or conditional on a set of controls, for multiple subgroups. This allows researchers to quickly detect the shape of that relationship, examine outliers, and assess which part of the support may be driving a relationship. We propose that the adoption of binned scatterplots will lead to the identification of new and interesting phenomena, raise the credibility of empirical research, and help create richer theories.

Keywords: Data Visualization, Binned Scatterplots, Graphs

Suggested Citation

Starr, Evan and Goldfarb, Brent D., Binned Scatterplots: A Simple Tool to Make Research Easier and Better (April 12, 2020). Forthcoming, Strategic Management Journal, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3257345 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3257345

Evan Starr (Contact Author)

University of Maryland Robert H Smith School of Business ( email )

United States
(301) 405-2320 (Phone)

Brent D. Goldfarb

University of Maryland - Robert H. Smith School of Business ( email )

College Park, MD 20742-1815
United States
301-405-9672 (Phone)
301-314-8787 (Fax)

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