Activities at AIB 2022


Field Experiments Across Firms and Countries

Masterclass Leads: David Reeb (National University of Singapore)

Time and Date: 5 July, 10am-12pm EST

Field experiments investigating corporate choices are an emerging trend in financial and strategic decision-making research. This discussion focuses on the challenges and issues in undertaking a field experiment across firms and countries. What makes a good field experiment to investigate corporate decision-making? How does experimental design affect the minimum detectable effects, and how does this impact external validity? What parameters are essential in balancing the costs to firms versus the benefit of more profound subject responses, especially in deception-based studies? What are the issues involved in privacy protection versus the need to disclose adequate details about the experiment? Finally, what additional considerations come into play when conducting a field experiment across multiple firms in different countries? This dialogue will discuss these field experiment issues in studies focused on corporate decision-making.

Ethnography in International Business: Theorizing from Fieldwork in Complex Cultural Contexts

Masterclass Lead: Mary Yoko Brannen (San Jose State & Copenhagen Business School)

Time and Date: 5 July, 1pm-3pm EST

Recent changes such as the ubiquitous use of virtual teams, (only becoming more pronounced in the current context of the Pandemic) and changing workplace demographics, have led to a situation where physical distance between cultures is decreasing while the complexity of cultural interaction is increasing. Such changes have only pushed to the forefront what anthropologists and other close observers of culture have always known. From a distance, meanings, and people’s sensemaking patterns might well be seen as commonly shared. But, up close, when individuals with varying pre-conceptions about each other’s cultures and contexts attempts to transfer, synchronize, learn from, and even co-create, the use-value of aggregate level cultural frameworks begins to seriously break down.

Ethnography is the method of choice for understanding such cultural complexity, especially when the organizational phenomenon under study is relatively new and/or rapidly changing. Yet very little guidance is given in PhD programs on conducting ethnographic research, how to build IB theory from it, or how to make a career around it.

This masterclass takes the participant from the preliminary steps of matching one’s research question with the appropriate ethnographic research design, to theory development, and provides pointers on writing it up.


Qualitative Data Analysis in IB Research: Templates and Their Alternatives

Workshop Leads: Tine Koehler (University of Melbourne), Jacqueline Mees-Buss (University of New South Wales), Rebecca Piekkari (Aalto University), Anne Smith (University of Tennessee Knoxville)

Time and Date: 5 July, 10am-12pm EST

Qualitative research in management and IB has in recent years witnessed the rise of qualitative templates: “systematic, simplified, and repeatable approaches to data collection, analysis, and interpretation that have become standardized and legitimized through enactment” (Köhler, Smith, and Bhakoo, 2021, p. 2). Templates are often recommended to researchers as a way of legitimizing their work in the eyes of journal gatekeepers and can even be required by reviewers. Templates have their uses, but they have their downsides too. They can deter methodological innovation, hamper creativity, discourage the adoption of other qualitative traditions and produce formulaic research. In this workshop, we will discuss the nature of templates for conducting and reporting qualitative data analysis and of possible alternatives. We will examine a popular template (the Gioia methodology), and then provide some examples of other approaches to analyzing data. The workshop is based on a 2022 feature topic of Organizational Research Methods(ORM) and workshop participants will be provided with readings that will be useful to them in their own research.

Surprises, Mixed Findings, or Questionable Research Practices? A Methodology for Evaluating Cumulative Empirical Analyses and Replication Studies

Time and Date: 5 July, 1pm-3pm EST

Workshop Leads: Gwendolyn Lee (University of Florida), Stewart Miller (University of Texas at San Antonio)

Questionable research practices that operate in the ambiguous space between what one might consider best practices and academic misconduct alert the research community to confront the discrepancies in cumulative empirical analyses—the discrepancies between an initial observation and subsequent observations about a theoretical expectation. Scholars of International Business (IB) have acknowledged that IB is not immune to science’s reproducibility and replicability crisis. Many leaders have provided methods-based recommendations to strengthen the trustworthiness of IB scholarship as well as to contribute to the development of good practices and encouragement of ethical empirical research.

However, while encouraged by the methodological improvements, we do not yet have a methodology for evaluating the discrepancies that can alert a study’s possible errors and potentially false knowledge. How do we know that the discrepancies indicate violations of internal validity and/or external validity? In order to classify the nature of discrepancies between a study and prior studies of a particular phenomenon (do the discrepancies suggest surprises, mixed findings, or questionable research practices?), we need modes of evaluation and suites of diagnostic tools, together as a methodology. The methodology may aid researchers, journal editors and reviewers in evaluating cumulative empirical analyses and assessing the merits of replication studies.

At the workshop, we will highlight epistemic mapping along with a diagnostic tool for examining internal validity, and transportability along with a diagnostic tool for examining external validity.

Panel: The Different Dimensions of Triangulation: How to Strengthen Your Research Project

Chairs: Bo Nielsen (University of Sydney), Catherine Welch (Trinity College Dublin)

Time and Date: 5 July, 3:30pm-5:30pm EST

The aim of this session is to provide a framework for building triangulation into the research design of an IB study. It will address issues such as: What are the different types of triangulation? What benefits can they provide? What are the challenges and decisions involved? Brief presentations by panel members will address the possibilities available for making use of triangulation in quantitative, qualitative and mixed-method research.  In order to illustrate how to apply different forms of triangulation creatively and effectively, examples of IB studies will be analyzed and contrasted.