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Article

Lynda C. Taylor

This paper focuses on the role of theory in the process of doing qualitative accounting research. It discusses the role of theory in qualitative accounting studies, and…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper focuses on the role of theory in the process of doing qualitative accounting research. It discusses the role of theory in qualitative accounting studies, and provides and example of how theory can be reflected upon, reassessed and refined during a research process.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper provides an illustrative account of theorizing during the process of qualitative accounting research. The paper places specific emphasis on an abductive approach to theorizing. An abductive theoretical framework is used to reflect on the theorizing process.

Findings

The “findings” reflect on the use of theory and the process of theorizing during a research process. The paper finds that abduction may be a useful way of theorizing in qualitative accounting research because it encourages the researcher to remain open to alternative explanations of data, which may promote theoretical development. This paper does not report the accounting practices of an organization in the traditional sense, but illustrates how the empirical findings led to an initial theoretical framework being developed.

Practical implications

The paper is intended to be informative in showing how theory can be used and developed during research. It may be of value and interest to new and emerging researchers. It may also interest established researchers seeking to reflect on their use of theory in research.

Originality/value

There are few contributions that focus exclusively and explicitly on how theory is used and developed during the process of qualitative accounting research. Moreover, the abductive approach has received limited attention in accounting. This paper aims to address these gaps.

Details

Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management, vol. 15 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1176-6093

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Article

Hayley Lockerbie and Dorothy Williams

The purpose of this paper is to develop and test a theoretical framework for understanding information literacy (IL) within the context of a small business workplace…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop and test a theoretical framework for understanding information literacy (IL) within the context of a small business workplace environment. The theoretical framework developed related IL competencies to competencies for success as described by the psychologist Howard Gardner in his book “Five Minds for the Future”.

Design/methodology/approach

A theoretical framework was developed using the CILIP Seven Pillars for IL and Howard Gardner’s Five Minds theory. Indicative connections between the Seven Pillars and Five Minds were identified by the researchers. The framework was tested through analysis of transcripts from qualitative interviews conducted with four small business owners.

Findings

Connections were found between the Seven Pillars and the Five Minds; some which had been projected by the researchers and others which had not. The theoretical framework aided description of and understanding of IL within small business workplace environments.

Research limitations/implications

A small sample size limits the generalizability of the findings, and further testing of the framework is required. The findings do, however, suggest that the context in which IL manifests remains significant and should be further examined in wider and divergent contexts.

Originality/value

Using theory from psychology paired with a well-known theory of IL to develop a new theoretical framework is novel. The framework developed offers a new way of understanding the role of IL within the context of small business workplaces.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 75 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

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Article

John Qin, Bernard O’Meara and Steven McEachern

Investigating diversity presents researchers with a paradox because extremely inconsistent and conflicting findings about the effects of diversity have emerged in this…

Abstract

Purpose

Investigating diversity presents researchers with a paradox because extremely inconsistent and conflicting findings about the effects of diversity have emerged in this field of study. It has been argued that the theoretical frameworks used have contributed to the paradox. Different and contradictory effects concerning the influence of group diversity can be predicted using these frameworks. The purpose of this paper is to examine the application of the main theoretical frameworks in the context of researching diversity.

Design/methodology/approach

The focus of this paper is a critical examination of three theoretical frameworks in the field of diversity research – similarity‐attraction theory, social categorization theory and the information/decision‐making approach. These are commonly applied in researching diversity. The basic elements of each theory, its applications in diversity research and its strengths and limitations are considered.

Findings

The discussion suggests that the paradox in diversity research emerges from a research tradition that views the three frameworks as being best applied separately because each framework predicts different and even contradictory outcomes. These differences are a consequence of distinctive theoretical operations. In addition, the strengths and limitations associated with each theoretical framework suggest that they might be integrated and subsequently applied in specific settings according to their respective strengths and limitations.

Research limitations/implications

In order to produce more consistent results in research on diversity, it is suggested that future researchers should not rely solely on a single theoretical framework to predict the effects of diversity. In particular, different theoretical frameworks may work well with certain types of diversity as well as certain levels of analysis.

Originality/value

The paper provides a framework for dissecting the diversity paradox and a foundation for designing fresh approaches that might produce findings that are more consistent.

Details

Management Research News, vol. 32 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0140-9174

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Article

Naief Alhazmi

The purpose of this paper is to provide a theoretical framework to improve understanding of physical asset management (AM) practices contained in well-known AM standards…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a theoretical framework to improve understanding of physical asset management (AM) practices contained in well-known AM standards and guidelines.

Design/methodology/approach

Textual thematic analysis of physical AM standards and guidelines was carried out after developing a priori template derived from existing theories in management knowledge. Triangulation to validate the developed theoretical framework was used based on a deductive logic of inquiry equipped with semi-structured interview. The interviewees were managers of physical asset departments of 15 out of 24 ministries of Saudi public sector.

Findings

The developed theoretical framework called “systematic asset management practices” (SAMP) explains the logic behind physical AM practices contained in well-known standards and guidelines in terms of the essence of directly related practices for the life cycle of physical assets. SAMP shows that all AM standards and guidelines use a similar logic for managing the life cycles of physical assets.

Practical implications

AM developers can use the SAMP theoretical framework to develop and improve AM guidelines. In addition, the framework enables practitioners to further understand differences among standards and guidelines in addition to their potential future development.

Originality/value

This paper provides an original theory for AM practices, which originally evolved from informal to formal on the basis of practitioners’ logic.

Details

Facilities, vol. 36 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article

Yi An, Howard Davey and Ian R.C. Eggleton

This paper aims to construct a comprehensive theoretical framework for interpreting voluntary IC disclosure practices by organizations.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to construct a comprehensive theoretical framework for interpreting voluntary IC disclosure practices by organizations.

Design/methodology/approach

Four most‐commonly used theories in the area, namely agency theory, stakeholder theory, signalling theory, and legitimacy theory, were integrated in terms of the interrelated concepts relating to voluntary IC disclosure.

Findings

The constructed theoretical framework includes three concepts: to reduce information asymmetry; to discharge accountability to various stakeholders; and to signal organizational legitimacy and excellence (or superior quality) to society, which are seen as motivations for organizations to disclose their IC on a voluntary basis.

Research limitations/implications

The framework ignores some other theoretical perspectives which are also relevant to voluntary IC disclosure; the framework is not justified by any empirical evidence.

Originality/value

This research is the first attempt to construct a comprehensive theoretical framework for the voluntary disclosure of IC; the constructed framework can be employed as a theoretical foundation for future empirical studies in relation to voluntary IC disclosure.

Details

Journal of Intellectual Capital, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1469-1930

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Article

Elena Gutiérrez-García, Mónica Recalde and José A. Alfaro

This article proposes a theoretical framework that synthesizes the main factors explaining the strategic contribution of communication department to open innovation (OI…

Abstract

Purpose

This article proposes a theoretical framework that synthesizes the main factors explaining the strategic contribution of communication department to open innovation (OI) processes. Because there is little or no research literature on communication and OI, the purpose is to fill this gap. A literature review and empirical qualitative research were conducted to weigh the significance of the framework in practice.

Design/methodology/approach

An interdisciplinary literature review was necessary to identify the main factors that explain the communication contribution to OI. The analysis of three multinational case studies has helped to enrich the proposed framework. Six semi-structured interviews were conducted with in-company communication managers and innovation managers in order to capture their perceptions.

Findings

Communication emerges as a strategic function with the potential to be embedded in the whole OI process. The main conclusion is that it may play an increasingly central role in enhancing relationships with external partners. Moreover, it enacts its strategic role while facilitating the enhancement of the organization's overall communication capability – that is, trust, transparency and a coherently articulated narrative.

Research limitations/implications

This article has not been designed as a comprehensive overview of the topic, nor it is designed to be statistically representative or generalizable. The study was conducted with the intention of exploring the theoretical and practical contributions of communication department to OI, as well as to raise awareness among scholars and practitioners on this new but neglected topic for research. Its qualitative approach serves to assess the value of the framework proposed, and the key issues highlighted here require further research.

Practical implications

The theoretical framework proposed may enable innovation managers to identify the factors in which the communication function and its practitioners may play a role for facilitating OI processes. Likewise, communication practitioners may find it useful to foster their organizational role and capabilities within these processes.

Originality/value

This article underlines the significant contribution that the communication function may play in OI processes. Research on this topic has been neglected thus far, despite its significance for the competitiveness of companies and the economy as a whole.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 26 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article

Christina Grandien and Catrin Johansson

Development and expansion of the communication management function in organizations has recently been discussed in relation to the concept of institutionalization…

Abstract

Purpose

Development and expansion of the communication management function in organizations has recently been discussed in relation to the concept of institutionalization. Empirical evidence has illustrated that the role of communication executives and communication managers varies between organizations, and could also be subjected to change within an organization. The purpose of this paper is to conceptualize institutionalization of communication management as a process. It aims to develop a theoretical framework that integrates important factors that influence and regulate this process.

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review resulted in a number of factors potentially influencing the institutionalization process. These factors were attributed to three main theoretical areas and four different levels of analysis, using institutional theory as a guiding framework. The theoretical areas and analysis levels, were proposed to be mutually interdependent, and were compiled in a theoretical framework, illustrated in a model.

Findings

The theoretical framework includes three main areas: organizational structure, social capital, and perceptions of the profession; and four levels of analysis: the societal, the organizational field, the organizational and the individual levels.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the study of institutionalization of communication management in organizations by providing a theoretical framework, which can be used to further investigate the development of the communication function and the role of communication executives and communication managers in organizations. By conceptualizing institutionalization of communication management as a process, and exploring and defining the important elements that influence and regulate this process, an important theoretical contribution to the field is made.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 17 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article

Francesco Pomponi, Luciano Fratocchi and Silvia Rossi Tafuri

The purpose of this article is to provide academicians and practitioners alike with a theory-based framework regarding horizontal collaboration in logistics. The proposed…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to provide academicians and practitioners alike with a theory-based framework regarding horizontal collaboration in logistics. The proposed tool is based on an incremental perspective, according to two main dimensions: mutual trust among partners and the extent of the cooperation.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used a “synthesising” approach to gauge potential contributions previously spread across different streams of research and disciplines that are now integrated into the framework. We conduct a deep literature review to characterise the horizontal collaboration phenomenon along two levels of analysis. In doing so, we examined relevant literature in the field of horizontal cooperation in logistics to critically appraise aims of, impediments to and existing models for horizontal collaboration. Additionally, we reviewed seminal literature of four organisational theories to assess their potential to contribute to the theoretical foundations of the growing topic of horizontal collaboration. Transaction Cost Economics, Social Exchange, Resource Dependence and Social Dilemma represent the theoretical foundations to cast light to how to design and implement inter-organisational horizontal initiatives.

Findings

The proposed tool organises horizontal collaborations within three steps for each of the two levels of classification: trust and extent of the cooperation. The organisational theories reviewed play different roles to help in different stages of the horizontal collaboration. Additionally, for each combination of trust/extent of the cooperation coherent pairs of aims of the collaboration and assets that are to be shared are defined.

Research limitations/implications

The article represents the first attempt to analyse horizontal collaboration from within the discipline itself and from the wider field of SCM through other well-established theoretical lenses. The proposed tool has shed some light into the black box of (un)successful horizontal collaboration, but it is theory based – which represents its main limitations – thus, requiring further testing of the research streams suggested in the paper.

Practical implications

The article not only gives insights into theoretical challenges of horizontal collaborations that needs further investigation but is also useful to companies involved in horizontal collaborations by helping define coherent assets that are to be shared to achieve specific goals. In its more theoretical underpinning, the framework can also inspire the partnership philosophy and help sketch a collaborative evolutionary path.

Originality/value

The lack of a theoretically robust landmark that could help understand, design and implement horizontal collaborations has been defined as a major theoretical and practical shortcoming. The article represents the first contribution aimed at filling that gap.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 20 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

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Article

Vicki Baard

The purpose of this paper is to further develop the epistemological base of interventionist research (IR) as a valid accounting and management research methodology…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to further develop the epistemological base of interventionist research (IR) as a valid accounting and management research methodology, through the identification of intervention theory and an IR framework derived from social sciences. Moreover, this paper seeks to contribute to empirical knowledge of IR through a critical review of limited empirical evidence relating to intervention theory and the extant IR frameworks derived from action research.

Design/methodology/approach

Texts and academic journal papers that judiciously review intervention theory, intervention research frameworks were identified systematically; along with empirical research addressing theoretical and methodological deficiencies of IR and, providing evidence to inform practical considerations when undertaking IR.

Findings

The key findings include rare empirical evidence addressing theoretical shortcomings and application of intervention theory, an IR framework derived from social sciences with extremely limited use in accounting and management research, deficiencies in action research oriented frameworks labelled as alternative forms of IR, an alternate perspective to positivistic validity and reliability issues and other practical considerations to facilitate the conducting of IR.

Originality/value

The novelty of this paper lies in the diminution of the fragmented nature of IR that undermines its scientific value through the identification of an intervention theory and IR framework experiencing extremely limited use in accounting and management research, with the exception of a cross‐disciplinary (management accounting and information systems) doctoral study, optimising IR utilisation with greater degrees of validity and reliability and, finally, a proposed alternative research design for utilisation in IR.

Details

Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management, vol. 7 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1176-6093

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Article

Dirk P. Snyman and Hennie Kruger

This paper aims to present the development of a framework for evaluating group behaviour in information security in practice.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present the development of a framework for evaluating group behaviour in information security in practice.

Design/methodology/approach

Information security behavioural threshold analysis is used as the theoretical foundation for the proposed framework. The suitability of the proposed framework is evaluated based on two sets of qualitative measures (general frameworks and information security frameworks) which were identified from literature. The successful evaluation of the proposed framework, guided by the identified evaluation measures, is presented in terms of positive practical applications, as well as positive peer review and publication of the underlying theory.

Findings

A methodology to formalise a framework to analyse group behaviour in information security can successfully be applied in a practical environment. This application takes the framework from only a theoretical conceptualisation to an implementable solution to evaluate and positively influence information security group behaviour.

Practical implications

Behavioural threshold analysis is identified as a practical mechanism to evaluate information security group behaviour. The suggested framework, as implemented in a management decision support system (DSS), allows practitioners to assess the security behaviour and awareness in their organisation. The resulting information can be used to exert an influence for positive change in the information security of the organisation.

Originality/value

A novel conceptual mapping of two sets of qualitative evaluation measures is presented and used to evaluate the proposed framework. The resulting framework is made practical through its encapsulation in a DSS.

Details

Information & Computer Security, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-4961

Keywords

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