Building Better Causal Theories: A Fuzzy Set Approach to Typologies in Organization Research

Peer C. Fiss
2011 Academy of Management Journal  
Typologies are an important way of organizing the complex cause-effect relationships that are key building blocks of the strategy and organization literatures. Here, I develop a novel theoretical perspective of causal core and periphery based on how elements of a configuration are connected to outcomes. Using data on high-technology firms, I empirically investigate configurations based on the Miles & Snow typology using fuzzy-set Qualitative Comparative Analysis (fsQCA). My findings show how
more » ... theoretical perspective developed here allows for a detailed analysis of causal core, periphery, and asymmetry, shifting the focus to mid-range theories of causal processes in typologies. 2 ... types and typologies are ubiquitous, both in everyday social life and in the language of the social sciences. Everybody uses them, but almost no one pays any attention to the nature of their construction (McKinney, 1969: 4)
doi:10.5465/amj.2011.60263120 fatcat:e7mhzfetvfb3pbepl75txwyv24