Theory of Science Perspectives on Strategic Management Research: Debates and a Novel View
36 Pages Posted: 12 Jul 2007
Date Written: June 2007
Arguments derived from the theory of science have been present in strategic management discourse since at least the beginning of the 1970s. The field's top-journal, the Strategic Management Journal, has printed several theory of science-based papers. Most positions in the theory of science (falsificationism, instrumentalism, realism, constructivism, etc.) have been present in the methodological discourse in the field. This chapter briefly reviews theory science applications to strategic management, before a distinctive perspective on the evolution of the strategic management field is developed. According to this perspective, science progresses when deeper level mechanisms are identified and theorized. Theoretical reduction may therefore be an independent criterion of scientific progress. Application to the strategic management field of this perspective, which in the social sciences is closely connected to the notion of methodological individualism, reveals that the field has evolved in a manner akin to a swinging pendulum, oscillating between micro and macro perspectives.
Keywords: The theory of science, strategic management, reduction
JEL Classification: B40, M1
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation