Edited by Giovanni Battista Dagnino
Chapter 5: Young and Growing Research Directions in Competitive Strategy
Joel A.C. Baum and Henrich R. Greve BRANCHES AND TWIGS IN STRATEGY A handbook is an opportunity to summarize the state of a research field and reflect on its development. Many handbooks are published when a research field has grown too large to master easily through study of journals and books, so they appear when the participants of the field are ready to celebrate progress. This handbook is no exception, because competitive strategy is a field that has grown quickly and accumulated several strong branches of research organized around specific theories and applications, as later chapters will show. This handbook is typical also in giving most attention to the task of summarizing the state of the field, and thus on its most established research traditions. However, we will follow a different strategy. Hidden among the major branches of competitive strategy research there are some smaller branches and twigs – young and (still) small research traditions. While they have not played a major role in the past growth of the field, some of them will become important for its future growth. We do not know which ones. We are willing to make some guesses, however, based on observing their recent growth and assessing the strengths of their evidence and potential for generating new work. These judgments are obviously affected by our exposure to and participation in competitive strategy research, and are thus a subjective reading of the field. We think there are three reasons that these research traditions are growing and may...
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