Lessons learned from methodological triangulation in management research

Eric P. Jack (Graduate School of Management, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, USA)
Amitabh S. Raturi (Department of Quantitative Analysis and Operations Management, College of Business Administration, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA)

Management Research News

ISSN: 0140-9174

Publication date: 1 June 2006

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to leverage the lessons learned from three published studies on volume flexibility in the capital goods industry to demonstrate the effective use of methodological triangulation in operations management research.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses lessons learned from three published studies to address several issues that researchers encounter when using methodological triangulation. It also develops a coherent framework for developing a research strategy that uses methodological triangulation.

Findings

In demonstrating the use of triangulation, the paper documents several tradeoffs that researchers face including: outlining a triangulation strategy; considering the strengths and weaknesses of different data sources; assessing convergent, complementary divergent and meta inference; and paying attention to errors of inference during the triangulation process.

Research limitations/implications

As with every research method, methodological triangulation has limitations that can be amplified by method specific issues and assumptions related to across‐method generalization and inference.

Practical implications

Provides a detailed example of why and how researchers make critical decisions on the appropriate use of methodological triangulation.

Originality/value

This work will assist future researchers who use triangulation to better position their work and to make informed choices that ultimately lead to more complete theories. This work would also be on interest to practitioners interested in keeping up with academic literature.

Keywords

Citation

Jack, E. and Raturi, A. (2006), "Lessons learned from methodological triangulation in management research", Management Research News, Vol. 29 No. 6, pp. 345-357. https://doi.org/10.1108/01409170610683833

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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