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Individualism, Holism and the Central Dilemma of Sociological Theory
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-038-7

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Book part
Publication date: 27 August 2020

John Scott

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The Emerald Guide to Talcott Parsons
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-654-2

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Book part
Publication date: 1 January 2006

Richard P. Bagozzi

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Review of Marketing Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-7656-1305-9

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Book part
Publication date: 27 September 2021

Amalesh Sharma, Sourav Bikash Borah, Anirban Adhikary and Tanjum Haque

The extant literature provides much-needed support to understand marketing accountability and how marketing actions are related to financial performance (FP). However, we…

Abstract

The extant literature provides much-needed support to understand marketing accountability and how marketing actions are related to financial performance (FP). However, we have limited understanding of the relationships between marketing actions and firms' social performance (SP) and environmental performance (EP). Understanding these links is critical to enhancing sustainable FP, SP, and EP. Moreover, the literature provides limited understanding of the measures by which SP and EP may be operationalized, or the data necessary to reach a conclusion. This study bridges these gaps by extensively reviewing the extant literature to offer a set of measures and data sources to operationalize SP and EP, and empirically show their relationships with marketing actions. We find that greenhouse gas (GHG) emission, environmental disclosure score, waste reduction, energy consumption, and recycling are prominent measures of EP, and that social disclosure score, philanthropy or community spending, and diversity of gender and race are prominent measures of SP. The KLD, ASSET4, and Bloomberg are prominent sources of data that can be used to operationalize SP, to which CDP may be added for EP. We also show that marketing actions positively affect EP and SP. This study contributes to the extant literature on SP and EP by identifying measures and data sources and linking marketing actions to both performance types. It contributes to policy development by identifying the importance of EP and SP and how marketing actions can help achieve such performance.

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Book part
Publication date: 2 December 2013

John Hamilton Bradford

To summarize and evaluate John Levi Marin’s recent book, The Explanation of Social Action (2011), the central thesis of which is that the actions of other people cannot be…

Abstract

Purpose

To summarize and evaluate John Levi Marin’s recent book, The Explanation of Social Action (2011), the central thesis of which is that the actions of other people cannot be explained without first understanding those actions from the point of view of the actors themselves. Martin thus endeavors to reorient social science toward concrete experience and away from purportedly useless abstractions.

Design/methodology/approach

This review chapter employs close scrutiny of and applies immanent critique to Martin’s argumentative claims, warrants, and the polemical style in which these arguments are presented.

Findings

This chapter arrives at the following conclusions: (1) Martin unnecessarily truncates the scope of sociological investigation; (2) he fails to define the key concepts within his argument, including “explanation,” “social action,” and “understanding,” among others; (3) he overemphasizes the external or “environmental” causes of action; (4) rather than inducing actions, the so-called “action-fields” induce experiences, and are therefore incapable of explaining actions; (5) Martin rejects counterfactual definitions of causality while defining his own notion of causality in terms of counterfactuals; (6) most of his critiques of other philosophical accounts of causality are really critiques of their potential misapplication; (7) the separation of experience and language (i.e., propositions about experience) in order to secure the validity of the former does not secure the validity of sociological inquiry, since experiences are invariably reported in language; and, finally, (8) Martin’s argument that people are neurologically incapable of providing accurate, retrospective accounts of the motivations behind their own actions is based on the kind of third-person social science he elsewhere repudiates; that he acknowledges the veracity of these studies demonstrates the potential utility of the “third-person” perspectives and the implausibility of any social science that abandons them.

Originality/value

To date Martin’s book has received much praise but little critical attention. This review chapter seeks to fill this lacuna in the literature in order to better elucidate Martin’s central arguments and the conclusions that can be reasonably inferred from the logical and empirical evidence presented.

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Social Theories of History and Histories of Social Theory
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-219-6

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Book part
Publication date: 31 October 2014

John Hamilton Bradford

To clarify and address questions that have arisen concerning John Levi Martin’s Explanation of Social Action (2011). I reply to some of Martin’s comments to my original…

Abstract

Purpose

To clarify and address questions that have arisen concerning John Levi Martin’s Explanation of Social Action (2011). I reply to some of Martin’s comments to my original review of his book (2012). In particular, this paper examines the distinction between first-person and third-person accounts of human action and whether third-person explanations of action are ever justified.

Findings

This paper concedes several of Martin’s points, but contra Martin, maintains that third-person accounts are sometimes valuable forms of explanation. This paper also concludes that the distinction between first-person and third-person explanations is relative to the actor.

Methodology/approach

A careful and close analysis of his reply is employed along with careful explication and exemplification of central concepts related to the study of human action.

Social implications

Martin has argued that third-person explanations of social action generate epistemological instability and hierarchical social relationships between researchers and those researched. This paper expresses doubts about the generalizability of these claims.

Originality/value of paper

To date, no extended discussion has been published pertaining to the social value of third-person explanations of social action.

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Mediations of Social Life in the 21st Century
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-222-7

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Article
Publication date: 27 November 2018

Hyunseok Hwang and Tiffany Amorette Young

The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between social capital and collective action at the county level in the US while incorporating the moderating…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between social capital and collective action at the county level in the US while incorporating the moderating effects of community racial diversity and urbanity and to find the changing effects of social capital on philanthropic collective action for community education.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper employs a quantitative research design. The dependent variable measures philanthropic collective action for community education while the independent variable for social capital is measured as a community level index. Moderating variables include a community racial diversity index and urbanity. This analysis tests and interprets interaction effects using moderated multiple regression (MMR), with the baselines of MMR being grounded to multivariate ordinary least squares (OLS) regression. Analyses are carried out in the context of the USA during 2006 and 2010, with US counties employed as the unit of analysis.

Findings

The effects of social capital on philanthropic contributions decline in counties with low- and mid-levels of racial diversity. On the contrary, the effects of social capital increase in highly racially diverse counties. The three-way interaction model result suggests that racial diversity positively moderates social capital on philanthropic collective action for community education where the effect of social capital is strong and positive in highly racially diverse urban communities.

Originality/value

This research complicates the notion that social capital and racial diversity are negatively associated when exploring collective action and community education, and suggests effects of social capital varies with moderating effects on philanthropic collective action for community education.

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International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 39 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2005

Arjen Adriaanse and Hans Voordijk

Although communication is of vital importance in construction projects, the construction industry is confronted with great communication difficulties and an ineffective…

Abstract

Although communication is of vital importance in construction projects, the construction industry is confronted with great communication difficulties and an ineffective use of information and communication technology (ICT) systems. In this study, the objective is to analyse obstacles and preconditions for an effective use of ICT by focusing on characteristics of interorganizational communication in construction projects. Interorganizational communication and ICT are studied by elaborating on these phenomena from the perspective of two paradigms – the traditional functionalist and the radical humanist – and theories representative for these paradigms – the agency theory and Habermas’ critical social theory. By using the method of metatriangulation, it is shown that in addition to the functionalist perspective, the critical social theory of Habermas is an appropriate theory for analysing obstacles and preconditions for an effective interorganizational communication and use of ICT. Based on this analysis, a critical research agenda on communication and ICT in construction is formulated. It is concluded that this type of research will lead to a more articulated view on the alignment between ICT applications and communication in construction projects and will show new directions for ICT development in the future.

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Construction Innovation, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

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Article
Publication date: 8 October 2018

Angel Belzunegui-Eraso, David Duenas-Cid and Inma Pastor-Gosálbez

Social action implemented by the Church via its affiliated entities, foundations and associations may be viewed as a uniform activity. In reality, however, several…

Abstract

Purpose

Social action implemented by the Church via its affiliated entities, foundations and associations may be viewed as a uniform activity. In reality, however, several organizational profiles exist that depend on the origin of these organizations (lay or religious), the scope of their activities (local or general) and their dependence on resources (whether from public administration or civil society). The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

In this paper, the authors examine this diversity based on a 2015 study of every Catholic Church social organization with headquarters in Catalonia. For the study, the authors conducted a detailed analysis of these organizations in order to determine their nature, scope and structure. The methodology combined questionnaire, interviews and non-participant observation.

Findings

The social actions of these organizations lead to interesting debates, such as those on: charity/assistentialism vs social justice; professionalization vs voluntarism; and personal autonomy vs functional dependence resulting from the action. This study also highlights how important it is that Church organizations carry out social actions to generate social welfare in the welfare states of southern European countries.

Originality/value

It is the first time that a study of the social impact of the church and its organizational implications in Spain has been made.

Details

Journal of Organizational Ethnography, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6749

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Book part
Publication date: 5 April 2012

Neil Fligstein and Doug McAdam

The discovery of meso-level social orders in organizational theory, political sociology, and social movement theory, what have subsequently been called sectors, policy…

Abstract

The discovery of meso-level social orders in organizational theory, political sociology, and social movement theory, what have subsequently been called sectors, policy domains, and most popularly, fields (or in organizational sociology, organizational fields), opens up a theoretical terrain that has not yet been fully explored (see Martin, 2003 for one view of fields). In this chapter, we propose that in fact all of these phenomena (and several others), fields, domains, policy domains, sectors, networks, and in game theory, the “game” bear a deep theoretical relationship to one another. They are all a way of characterizing how meso-level social orders, social spaces are constructed. We want to make a bold claim: the idea of fields is the central sociological construct for understanding all arenas of collective strategic action. The idea of fields is not just useful for understanding markets and political policy domains, but also social movements, and many other forms of organized social life. In essence, scholars working on their particular empirical corner of the world have inadvertently discovered something fundamental about social structure: that collective actors somehow manage to work to get “action” toward their socially and cultural constructed ends and in doing so, enlist the support of others in order to produce meso-level social orders.

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Rethinking Power in Organizations, Institutions, and Markets
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-665-2

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