Release | Theory as method: introduction to supertheoretical options for organization and management research

Abstract: This article is devoted to conditions and examples of how theories may be applied as methods in the fields of management research and organization studies. An introduction to minimum requirements for a successful refunctionalization of theory as method as well as to nine contributions to a special issue of the Journal of Organizational Change Management on “Theory as method” is provided. The review of these nine cases suggests that the use of theories as methods is not necessarily harmful for the former, and particularly not for the more robust among them. This article sheds new light on the value of theoretical monism or loyalty and calls for a reassessment of the relative value of expertise in a specific research field, method and or theory.

Keywords: Functionalism, functionalization, theoretical monism, theory method.

Suggested citation: Roth S., Mills A., Lee B., and Jemielniak D. (2021), Theory as method: introduction to supertheoretical options for organization and management research, Journal of Organizational Change Management, ahead-of-print, DOI: 10.1108/JOCM-05-2021-0162.

The corrected proof version of this article is available for download here.

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