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Book part
Publication date: 31 July 2009

David A. Whetten

This chapter sets forth a form of comparative analysis that is explicitly organizational, in the sense that it uses cross-level, contextual or compositional, analysis to…

Abstract

This chapter sets forth a form of comparative analysis that is explicitly organizational, in the sense that it uses cross-level, contextual or compositional, analysis to explain organizational-level observations, especially comparisons between organizations. Inter-organizational comparisons often surface paradoxical results, in the form of unexpected differences among similar kinds of organizations, or unexpected similarities among different kinds of organizations. The value of using comparative analysis in these cases is that the information required to unravel organizational-level puzzling results is often located at a higher or lower levels. The proposed form of comparative analysis thus extends the conventional top-down, unidirectional form by adding a bottom-up component – making it bi-directional. In addition to introducing an organization-centered form of comparative analysis, the chapter offers suggestions for its practice and speculates about the potential benefits of its broad application within organizational studies.

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Studying Differences between Organizations: Comparative Approaches to Organizational Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-647-8

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Book part
Publication date: 5 February 2018

Teklu Abate Bekele

The significant contribution and relevance of Comparative and International Education (CIE) mainly depends on how closely it studies the interplay between society and…

Abstract

The significant contribution and relevance of Comparative and International Education (CIE) mainly depends on how closely it studies the interplay between society and education, considering what is dubbed as the global and the local. Many CIE studies including critical reviews seems to dwell on the topic, purpose, conceptual, and methodological aspects of the field, magnifying what appears to be the global. Our understanding of the role particular sociocultural, economic, and political contexts play in education seems inconclusive. Using appropriate analytical frameworks that delineate society–education dynamics, this study further problematizes the comparative and international elements of CIE area studies, with a focus on context analysis. The critical review considers area studies published over the last seven years in leading CIE journals and answers this question: How and to what extent do CIE area studies operationalize context analysis? The aim is not so much to bring consensus but to further highlight tensions and issues in conducting context-sensitive comparative and international education studies. The findings indicate that CIE research over the last seven years does not seem to live up to the expectation of producing meaningfully contextualized knowledge. The role of context analysis in CIE research seems ill defined and practiced. Alternative explanations for this and considerations for further scholarship are discussed.

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Annual Review of Comparative and International Education 2017
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-765-4

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Book part
Publication date: 31 July 2009

Rodney Lacey and Peer C. Fiss

The contrast of multilevel and comparative research may seem counterintuitive at first. After all, one might argue that comparative research on organizations by necessity…

Abstract

The contrast of multilevel and comparative research may seem counterintuitive at first. After all, one might argue that comparative research on organizations by necessity spans several levels of analysis (Rokkan, 1966). Yet, multilevel and comparative research on organizations present rather distinct traditions in organization studies, each with its own epistemological assumptions and associated methods. Accordingly, an approach that aims to incorporate both multilevel and comparative ideas needs to start with taking inventory of these prior literatures to situate itself. In the following, we thus turn to the literatures on multilevel and comparative research as different traditions with surprisingly little overlap.

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Studying Differences between Organizations: Comparative Approaches to Organizational Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-647-8

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Book part
Publication date: 31 July 2009

Brayden G King, Teppo Felin and David A. Whetten

Comparative organizational analysis once dominated American organizational sociology, grounded in rich case studies about organizational processes and outcomes. The…

Abstract

Comparative organizational analysis once dominated American organizational sociology, grounded in rich case studies about organizational processes and outcomes. The Columbia school's approach to organizational research was exemplary in this regard. Following the publication of Robert K. Merton's (1940) essay, “Bureaucratic Structure and Personality,” he attracted a group of talented doctoral students to his formal organizations seminar (Crothers, 1990), the core of whom would go on to write dissertations, books, and articles forming the substance of American organizational sociology in the decades to come. Among those students were Philip Selznick, Alvin Gouldner, Peter Blau, Seymour Martin Lipset, Rose Coser, and James Coleman. While their work varied greatly in substantive content, their studies shared a theoretical interest in explaining intra-organizational dynamics and the unexpected outcomes of bureaucratic administration. Organizations, they demonstrated, developed “lives of their own,” quite outside the intents of their founders (Haveman, 2009; refer, especially, Selznick, 1957). Organizations, in other words, were adaptive to the needs of their constituents, but adaptations did not always produce the intended results. One of the unintended consequences of organizational development was increasing variety in the kinds of organizations that emerged to meet particular societal goals or ends. Thus, an inherent focus of this early comparative research was the explanation of variety in organizational types, policies, and outcomes and an emphasis on the ways in which organizations diverged from ideal types.

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Studying Differences between Organizations: Comparative Approaches to Organizational Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-647-8

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Book part
Publication date: 11 May 2007

Claude Rubinson and Charles C. Ragin

Shalev's (2007) critique of the use of multiple regression in comparative research brings together and synthesizes a variety of previous critiques, ranging from those…

Abstract

Shalev's (2007) critique of the use of multiple regression in comparative research brings together and synthesizes a variety of previous critiques, ranging from those focusing on foundational issues (e.g., the persistent problem of limited diversity), to estimation issues (e.g., the unrealistic assumption of correct model specification), to narrow technical issues (e.g., the difficulty of deriving valid standard errors for regression coefficients in pooled cross-sectional time-series models). Broadly speaking, these concerns can be described as epistemological, theoretical, and methodological, respectively. While the distinctions among these three are not always clear-cut, the tripartite scheme provides a useful way to map the different kinds of critiques that may be directed at the use of regression analysis in comparative research. In the first half of this essay we build upon Shalev's discussion to clarify the conditions under which regression analysis may be epistemologically, theoretically, or methodologically inappropriate for comparative research. Our goal is to situate Shalev's specific critiques of the use of multiple regression in comparative work within the context of social research in general.

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Capitalisms Compared
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-414-0

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Book part
Publication date: 7 May 2015

Olga Fedotova and Oksana Chigisheva

Contemporary comparative pedagogical discourses are becoming increasingly popular and strongly modify the policy and practice of education worldwide. Intensification of…

Abstract

Contemporary comparative pedagogical discourses are becoming increasingly popular and strongly modify the policy and practice of education worldwide. Intensification of empirical studies naturally leads to the decrease of the research interest in purely methodological issues that stand apart from practical application of comparative analysis and comparative method. This chapter attempts to fill in the methodological lacuna in the study of comparative method and its potential when doing research determined by the ideological context. The authors state two main research questions, the first one concerning the potential of comparative analysis for the detection of the technologies and facts of ideological indoctrination and the second one focusing on its functional possibilities in revealing the transformations in the vision of pedagogical reality by the theorist under the influence of the complete change of the state’s ideology. Statistical analysis of the units, content and comparative analysis, quantification, interpretation, and analogy were used for the comprehensive comparative study of the small volume of text by A. S. Makarenko Beseda s rabochim aktivom na zavode ‘Sharikopodshipnik’ (Conversation with Working Active Members at the Plant ‘Ball-bearing’) with comments published in Russian and its analogue issued in German by Makarenko-Referat laboratory and two text versions of “Zadachi i metody narodnoj shkoly” (“Objectives and Methods of National School”) by P. P. Blonsky issued under the same title in 1916 and 1917. General outcomes of the research vividly demonstrate how micro- and macro contexts may widen the horizons of the comparative method and significantly differentiate comparative research schemes.

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Comparative Sciences: Interdisciplinary Approaches
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-456-5

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Book part
Publication date: 11 May 2007

Michael Shalev

The difficulties that MR poses for comparativists were anticipated 40 years ago in Sidney Verba's essay “Some Dilemmas of Comparative Research”, in which he called for a…

Abstract

The difficulties that MR poses for comparativists were anticipated 40 years ago in Sidney Verba's essay “Some Dilemmas of Comparative Research”, in which he called for a “disciplined configurative approach…based on general rules, but on complicated combinations of them” (Verba, 1967, p. 115). Charles Ragin's (1987) book The Comparative Method eloquently spelled out the mismatch between MR and causal explanation in comparative research. At the most basic level, like most other methods of multivariate statistical analysis MR works by rendering the cases invisible, treating them simply as the source of a set of empirical observations on dependent and independent variables. However, even when scholars embrace the analytical purpose of generalizing about relationships between variables, as opposed to dwelling on specific differences between entities with proper names, the cases of interest in comparative political economy are limited in number and occupy a bounded universe.2 They are thus both knowable and manageable. Consequently, retaining named cases in the analysis is an efficient way of conveying information and letting readers evaluate it.3 Moreover, in practice most producers and consumers of comparative political economy are intrinsically interested in specific cases. Why not cater to this interest by keeping our cases visible?

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Capitalisms Compared
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-414-0

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2017

Hongwei Wang, Song Gao, Pei Yin and James Nga-Kwok Liu

Comparative opinions widely exist in online reviews as a common way of expressing consumers’ ideas or preferences toward certain products. Such opinion-rich texts are key…

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Abstract

Purpose

Comparative opinions widely exist in online reviews as a common way of expressing consumers’ ideas or preferences toward certain products. Such opinion-rich texts are key proxies for detecting product competitiveness. The purpose of this paper is to set up a model for competitiveness analysis by identifying comparative relations from online reviews for restaurants based on both pattern matching and machine learning.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors define the sub-category of comparative sentences according to Chinese linguistics. Classification rules are set up for each type of comparative relations through class sequence rule. To improve the accuracy of classification, a comparative entity dictionary is then introduced for further identifying comparative sentences. Finally, the authors collect reviews for restaurants from Dianping.com to conduct experiments for testing the proposed model.

Findings

The experiments show that the proposed method outperforms the baseline methods in terms of precision in identifying comparative sentences. On the basis of such comparison-rich sentences, product features and comparative relations are extracted for sentiment analysis, and sentimental score is assigned to each comparative relation to facilitate competitiveness analysis.

Research limitations/implications

Only the explicit comparative relations are discussed, neglecting the implicit ones. Besides that, the study is grounded in the assumption that all features are homogeneous. In some cases, however, the weights to different aspects are not of the same importance to market.

Practical implications

On the basis of comparative relation mining, product features and comparative opinions are extracted for competitiveness analysis, which is of interest to businesses for finding weakness or strength of products, as well as to consumers for making better purchase decisions.

Social implications

Comparative relation mining could be possibly applied in social media for identifying relations among users or products, and ranking users or products, as well as helping companies target and track competitors to enhance competitiveness.

Originality/value

The authors propose a research framework for restaurant competitiveness analysis by mining comparative relations from online consumer reviews. The results would be able to differentiate one restaurant from another in some aspects of interest to consumers, and reveal the changes in these differences over time.

Details

Industrial Management & Data Systems, vol. 117 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-5577

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Article
Publication date: 2 September 2014

Hongwei Wang and Wei Wang

Extant methods of product weakness detection usually depend on time-consuming questionnaire with high artificial involvement, so the efficiency and accuracy are not…

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1183

Abstract

Purpose

Extant methods of product weakness detection usually depend on time-consuming questionnaire with high artificial involvement, so the efficiency and accuracy are not satisfied. The purpose of this paper is to propose an opinion-aware analytical framework – PRODWeakFinder – to expect to detect product weaknesses through sentiment analysis in an effective way.

Design/methodology/approach

PRODWeakFinder detects product weakness by considering both comparative and non-comparative evaluations in online reviews. For comparative evaluation, an aspect-oriented comparison network is built, and the authority is assessed for each node by network analysis. For non-comparative evaluation, sentiment score is calculated through sentiment analysis. The composite score of aspects is calculated by combing the two types of evaluations.

Findings

The experiments show that the comparative authority score and the non-comparative sentiment score are not highly correlated. It also shows that PRODWeakFinder outperforms the baseline methods in terms of accuracy.

Research limitations/implications

Semantic-based method such as ontology are expected to be applied to identify the implicit features. Furthermore, besides PageRank, other sophisticated network algorithms such as HITS will be further employed to improve the framework.

Practical implications

The link-based network is more suitable for weakness detection than the weight-based network. PRODWeakFinder shows the potential on reducing overall costs of detecting product weaknesses for companies.

Social implications

A quicker and more effective way would be possible for weakness detection, enabling to reduce product defects and improve product quality, and thus raising the overall social welfare.

Originality/value

An opinion-aware analytical framework is proposed to sentiment mining of online product reviews, which offer important implications regarding how to detect product weaknesses.

Details

Industrial Management & Data Systems, vol. 114 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-5577

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Book part
Publication date: 27 September 2019

Petrina M. Davidson, Maureen F. Park, Nino Dzotsenidze, Obioma Okogbue and Alexander W. Wiseman

Osmosis is the movement of particles across a boundary until the saturation of particles has been equalized on both sides of the boundary. Although this term is most often…

Abstract

Osmosis is the movement of particles across a boundary until the saturation of particles has been equalized on both sides of the boundary. Although this term is most often used in biology, it is a relevant metaphor for comparative and international education (CIE), as the boundaries which define the field are permeable, with few limitations on what is and is not considered CIE. Previous introductory chapters to the Annual Review of Comparative and International Education have examined the professionalization of the field through the characteristics of articles published in prominent CIE journals. While drawing on a similar framework, this chapter, rather than examining CIE from the inside, examines the development of the field from the outside by considering what, where, and why CIE-related articles appear in journals outside of the field. In addition to data on articles from CIE journals for 2017, education-related articles from domestic and international journals with the highest impact factor from the fields of sociology, political science, economics, anthropology, psychology, and education are also included. These components will provide multiple points of comparison and discussion to examine how non-CIE journals include CIE related topics to identify which themes permeate the CIE boundary.

Details

Annual Review of Comparative and International Education 2018
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-416-8

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