Realist Inquiry

Springer Nature
Publication Type:
Handbook of Philosophy of Management, 2022, pp. 55-77
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Reihlen et al. Realist Inquiry_conditionally_accepted_ds_cn MR2_20210713.pdfAccepted version1.02 MB
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Realism has become an influential philosophical foundation that has increasingly informed research in management studies. Realism, which assumes that the world external to the subject is mind-independent, offers a particularly attractive way out of the anthropocentrism and idealism in much contemporary research in management studies that detaches theorizing from its material conditions. This becomes especially problematic when understanding and handling the “Grand Challenges” closely connected with our material existence in the world. In this chapter, three different versions of realism – empirical, critical, and scientific realism – are introduced, and it is discussed how the latter two have informed management studies in terms of ontology, epistemology, and praxeology. Finally, some recommendations for future research are summarized.
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