Can I Trust Your Findings? Ruling out Alternative Explanations in International Business Research

Journal of International Business Studies, 47(8): 881-897, 2016

18 Pages Posted: 27 Dec 2018

See all articles by Alvaro Cuervo-Cazurra

Alvaro Cuervo-Cazurra

Northeastern University - Department of International Business and Strategy

Ulf Andersson

Copenhagen Business School - Department of Strategic Management and Globalization; Uppsala University - Department of Business Studies

Mary Yoko Brannen

San Jose State University - Donald and Sally Lucas Graduate School of Business

Bo Bernhard Nielsen

Copenhagen Business School - Department of Strategic Management and Globalization

Rebecca Reuber

University of Toronto - Rotman School of Management

Date Written: May 27, 2016

Abstract

The complex nature of international business research, with its cross-country and multi-level nature, complicates the empirical identification of relationships among theoretical constructs. The objective of this editorial is to provide guidance to help international business scholars navigate this complexity and ensure that readers can trust their findings. We provide suggestions for how to rule out alternative explanations, explaining key considerations not only in empirical analyses, but also in theory building and in research design. Our discussion covers both qualitative and quantitative studies because we believe that it is imperative to understand how trustworthiness is established in both traditions, even for international business researchers who self-identify with only one. This enables scholars to have a broader scope of knowledge when interpreting past research in the field and to be more adept at explaining their design choices to a diverse audience.

Keywords: method of analysis, econometrics, theory-method intersection, qualitative/quantitative comparisons, research design, reliability, case theoretic approaches, controls, international business

JEL Classification: F23

Suggested Citation

Cuervo-Cazurra, Alvaro and Andersson, Ulf and Brannen, Mary Yoko and Nielsen, Bo Bernhard and Reuber, Rebecca, Can I Trust Your Findings? Ruling out Alternative Explanations in International Business Research (May 27, 2016). Journal of International Business Studies, 47(8): 881-897, 2016. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3298409

Alvaro Cuervo-Cazurra (Contact Author)

Northeastern University - Department of International Business and Strategy ( email )

D'Amore-McKim School of Business
313 Hayden Hall, 360 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
United States
16173736568 (Phone)
16173738628 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://cuervo-cazurra.com

Ulf Andersson

Copenhagen Business School - Department of Strategic Management and Globalization ( email )

Porcelænshaven 24
Frederiksberg, 2000
Denmark

Uppsala University - Department of Business Studies ( email )

Box 513
SE 751 20 Uppsala
Sweden

Mary Yoko Brannen

San Jose State University - Donald and Sally Lucas Graduate School of Business ( email )

One Washington Square
San Jose, CA 95192-0066
United States
408-924-3580 (Phone)
408-924-3555 (Fax)

Bo Bernhard Nielsen

Copenhagen Business School - Department of Strategic Management and Globalization ( email )

Porcelænshaven 24
Frederiksberg, 2000
Denmark
+45 3815 3030 (Phone)
+45 2815 3035 (Fax)

Rebecca Reuber

University of Toronto - Rotman School of Management ( email )

105 St. George Street
Toronto, Ontario M5S 3E6 M5S1S4
Canada
(416) 978-5705 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.rotman.utoronto.ca/reuber/contact.htm

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