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Book part
Publication date: 2 December 2013

Milan Zafirovski

To reexamine the Weber Thesis pertaining to the relationship between ascetic Protestantism – especially Calvinism – and modern capitalism, as between an economic “spirit”…

Abstract

Purpose

To reexamine the Weber Thesis pertaining to the relationship between ascetic Protestantism – especially Calvinism – and modern capitalism, as between an economic “spirit” and an economic “structure,” in which the first is assumed to be the explanatory factor and the second the dependent variable.

Design/methodology/approach

The chapter provides an attempt to combine theoretical-empirical and comparative-historical approaches to integrate theory with evidence supplied by societal comparisons and historically specific cases.

Findings

The chapter identifies the general sociological core of the Weber Thesis as a classic endeavor in economic sociology (and thus substantive sociological theory) and separates it from its particular historical dimension in the form of an empirical generalization from history. I argue that such a distinction helps to better understand the puzzling double “fate” of the Weber Thesis in social science, its status of a model in economic sociology and substantive sociological theory, on the one hand, and its frequent rejection in history and historical economics, on the other. The sociological core of the Thesis, postulating that religion, ideology, and culture generally deeply impact economy, has proved to be more valid, enduring, and even paradigmatic, as in economic sociology, than its historical component establishing a special causal linkage between Calvinism and other types of ascetic Protestantism and the “spirit” and “structure” of modern capitalism in Western society at a specific point in history.

Research limitations/implications

In addition to the two cases deviating from the Weber Thesis considered here, it is necessary to investigate and identify the validity of the Thesis with regard to concrete historical and empirical instances.

Originality/value

The chapter provides the first effort to systematically analyze and distinguish between the sociological core and the historical components of the Weber Thesis as distinct yet intertwined components.

Details

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

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2015

Matevz Raskovic

The purpose of this paper is to apply an economic sociology perspective to the activity–resource–actor (ARA) interaction model for business relationships. Interaction has…

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1694

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to apply an economic sociology perspective to the activity–resource–actor (ARA) interaction model for business relationships. Interaction has been chosen as a conceptual domain where economic sociology has a particularly high potential to advance business-to-business (B2B) marketing in terms of its future research directions.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper provides a structured account of economic sociology through the description of eight key economic sociology concepts and discussion of the structuration theory. This is followed by an overview of the usage of the eight key economic sociology concepts in current B2B marketing research, and concludes with outlining eight specific future research directions which guide future research on interaction in business relationships.

Findings

Eight economic sociology concepts are identified: embeddedness, networks, institutions, power, social capital, identity, social structures and cognition. An overview of the application of these constructs within the B2B marketing literature shows how most of them are used as metaphors with a gap in understanding their economic sociology background.

Research limitations/implications

Future research directions are described individually, do not include potential interaction effects and are developed within the ARA interaction model framework. Given the conceptual nature of the paper, it does not provide any empirical data and illustrations related to any of the eight key economic sociology concepts.

Originality/value

The paper answers a call for a wider integration of economic sociology into the B2B marketing literature. It provides a systematic eight-concept economic sociology framework to be used by B2B marketing theorists and researchers. The paper finishes with eight concrete future research directions through which an economic sociology perspective can help advance B2B marketing theory and business relationship management practice. A brief discussion of managerial implications is also provided at the end.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 30 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

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Book part
Publication date: 28 December 2013

Sabine Frerichs

This article aims to show that studies of transnational risk regulation can benefit from Polanyian and neo-Polanyian research agendas in the field of law, economy, and…

Abstract

This article aims to show that studies of transnational risk regulation can benefit from Polanyian and neo-Polanyian research agendas in the field of law, economy, and society. Risk regulation would then be understood as a corrective force within the market society. Drawing on the relevant literature in the field, Karl Polanyi’s work is contextualized both in the past (“scholarship before and beside Polanyi”) and in the present (“scholarship after and beyond Polanyi”). The review considers developments within sociology, its neighboring disciplines economics and jurisprudence, and the interdisciplinary research fields of “economy and society,” “law and society,” and “law and economy.” The article demonstrates that Polanyi is a “late classic” who shares the holistic orientation of classical historical scholarship. At the same time, it is argued that his “early revival” is due to the topicality of his criticism of the market society, and its inherent risks, in an era of neoliberalism and globalization. By going back and forth in time, the article situates Polanyi in a line of holistically minded scholarship that combines insights of general, economic, and legal sociology in what can be called the “economic sociology of law.” This is “old” and “new,” at the same time.

Details

From Economy to Society? Perspectives on Transnational Risk Regulation
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-739-9

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Book part
Publication date: 19 May 2009

Nina Bandelj

Purpose – This introductory essay to an edited volume proposes possible contributions from economic sociology to the study of work broadly defined. Weber had a vision of…

Abstract

Purpose – This introductory essay to an edited volume proposes possible contributions from economic sociology to the study of work broadly defined. Weber had a vision of economic sociology as a study of not only economic phenomena but also economically relevant and economically conditioned phenomena. Work, in its market and nonmarket variety, falls in all these categories and thus presents a fruitful research arena for economic sociologists who have thus far primarily studied markets and corporations.

Methodology/Approach – The essay provides an analytic review of literature in economic sociology, uses information from the content analysis of recent publications in sociology of work, and provides an overview of chapters included in this edited volume.

Value of paper – Applying economic sociology to work means: (a) investigating its embeddedness in social structures, culture, and politics; and (b) uncovering the socially constructed nature of what constitutes paid market work. This article also proposes that economic sociologists can expand the boundaries of work by examining such activities as care work, work in the informal economy, and prison work.

Details

Economic Sociology of Work
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-368-2

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Article
Publication date: 1 November 2000

Milan Zafirovski

The paper argues in favor of reestablishing sociological or social economics as a legitimate discipline of economic science. Conspires toward undertaking analyses of the…

Abstract

The paper argues in favor of reestablishing sociological or social economics as a legitimate discipline of economic science. Conspires toward undertaking analyses of the social co‐determination of economic behaviors, variables and systems. Suggests the need for incorporation of sociological/social economics in the existing semi‐official (JEL) taxonomy of economic fields and subjects. The argument for sociological economics can be made on two grounds: ontological or empirical‐historical and epistemological or theoretical‐methodological ones. The article bases the argument for sociological economics on the former, i.e., the empirical‐historical social co‐determination of the economy. The relations of sociological economics to sociology of economics are specified and the implications of sociological/social economics for modern economic science are also discussed.

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 27 no. 11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2005

Alexander Ebner

The purpose of this paper is to reconstruct economic reasoning on entrepreneurship from the perspective of its institutional content, thus underlining the aspects of power…

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18263

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to reconstruct economic reasoning on entrepreneurship from the perspective of its institutional content, thus underlining the aspects of power relations and leadership, which are related with the organisational and technological dimensions of innovation and coordination as entrepreneurial functions.

Design/methodology/approach

In reconstructing the theory of entrepreneurship in a range from classical political economy to current efforts in economic sociology, the paper focuses on an appreciation of Schumpeterian entrepreneurship as a concept that is influenced both by Austrian marginalism and the German historical school.

Findings

The paper finds that the research perspective of economic sociology as a means for exploring the institutional foundations of entrepreneurship is of utmost relevance for further efforts in theorising the role of entrepreneurship in economic development.

Practical implications

The paper promotes policy implications, which underline that policies for the support of entrepreneurship need to account for the differentiation of entrepreneurial functions and their actual carriers, reconsidering the economic manifestations of their institutional embeddedness.

Originality/value

The paper establishes innovation and coordination as ideal types of entrepreneurial functions, perceiving them as fundamental concepts in economic reasoning on entrepreneurship in the process of economic development.

Details

Journal of Economic Studies, vol. 32 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3585

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2003

Milan Zafirovski

The rediscovery and analytical reconstitution are present tendencies in much of social science, especially economics and sociology. The emergence and expansion of the…

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6387

Abstract

The rediscovery and analytical reconstitution are present tendencies in much of social science, especially economics and sociology. The emergence and expansion of the so‐called new institutional economics exemplify these tendencies as do attempts at revival and rehabilitation of the old institutional economics. Analogous tendencies have been manifested in sociology by the further development of economic sociology, especially by various reformulations of its classical premise of institutional structuration and embeddedness of economic behavior. Nevertheless, much of mainstream economics tends to neglect or play down certain salient divergences between the latter's neoclassical or orthodox institutionalism, and heterodox or critical institutionalism advanced by the old institutional economics as well as by economic sociology. Identifies and elaborates such divergences between these seemingly homologous varieties of institutionalism. Since institutionalist varieties and tendencies in both economics and sociology are considered, represents a contribution to an interdisciplinary treatment of social institutions, a treatment originally proposed by the old institutional economics of Veblen et al., the German historical school as well as by Weberian‐Durkheimian classical economic sociology.

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 30 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

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Article
Publication date: 23 February 2010

Tibor Mandják and Zoltán Szántó

By analyzing organizations as social actors and business relationships as social relationships, sociology can improve business relationship management. This paper aims to…

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2810

Abstract

Purpose

By analyzing organizations as social actors and business relationships as social relationships, sociology can improve business relationship management. This paper aims to explore the issues involved.

Design/methodology/approach

A business relationship is an interactive exchange between two organizations embedded in a network of business connections. The paper reviews theories of social actions and social actors and the concepts of economic field and embeddedness to illustrate some social dimensions of business relationships.

Findings

Social action and social actor theories emphasize that co‐operation is always encumbered with conflicts, that consciousness about the relationship is fundamental for both strongly and weakly structured actors, and that actors (people involved in a business relationship) always have some freedom of manoeuvre. The concept of economic field underscores the specificity of each business relationship and the critical need for concrete analysis. The concept of embeddedness highlights that no business relationship is possible without personal bonds.

Research limitations/implications

These are the first results of a deeper and broader research directed towards a conceptual model of business relationship management.

Practical implications

The paper can help managers to analyze more deeply the social dimensions of business relations with both suppliers and buyers. Consciousness, the ongoing presence of conflicts, the unavoidable role of personal bonds, and interactivity are always relevant in business relationship management.

Originality/value

The paper integrates sociological and business marketing approaches. It applies essential sociological theories and concepts to business relationship management.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 25 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

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Abstract

Details

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

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Article
Publication date: 15 July 2014

Matevž Rašković

The purpose of this paper is to address the misapplication of the embeddedness concept in Ferraris’s (2014) paper and show how it needs to be used as a cornerstone economic

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to address the misapplication of the embeddedness concept in Ferraris’s (2014) paper and show how it needs to be used as a cornerstone economic sociology concept within his proposed framework. This paper is a response to his paper in the Multinational Business Review “Rethinking the literature on ‘multiple embeddedness’ and subsidiary-specific advantages”.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper outlines the origin of the embeddedness concept and its evolution within the economic sociology literature. It addresses different types of embeddedness and continues with a critical analysis of Ferraris’s (2014) proposed framework of four main types of multinational enterprise (MNE) relationships. It provides suggestions for its improvement and application, as well as discusses the appropriate applications of embeddedness concept by international business (IB) scholars in MNE research.

Findings

The paper shows how the embeddedness concept is mostly used as a metaphor and as a simple umbrella label for different types of connections between MNEs, their subsidiaries and different types of environments. The analysis of Ferraris’s (2014) proposed framework shows how MNE embeddedness is incorrectly understood as emanating from the balancing of local responsiveness and global integration within MNEs, where subsidiaries develop subsidiary-specific advantages (SSAs) by recombining home – host country-specific advantages and parent – subsidiary firm-specific advantages (FSAs).

Originality/value

The paper adds to the existing IB understanding of MNEs’ multiple embeddedness and subsidiaries’ dual embeddedness through a wider and more structured economic sociology perspective. It provides an appropriate economic sociology-grounded typology of different types of embeddedness. A discussion of possible future research directions stresses how the embeddedness – dissembeddedness capability is a key source of MNE competitive advantage, which moderates the actual recombination process of producing FSAs and SSAs.

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