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 Theories are nets cast to catch what we

call “the world” to rationalize, to explain,
and to master it. We endeavor to make
the mesh ever finer and finer
Two Purpose of Theory
 Prediction
 Understanding
 A coherent set of general propositions
used as principles of explanation of the
apparent relationships of certain observed
 Theories allow generalization beyond
individual facts or situation
Concept (or construct)
 A generalized idea about a class of
objects, attributes, occurrences, or
processes that has been given a name
 Building block that abstract reality
What is Construct
 A construct is an image or idea specifically
invented for a given research and/or
theory building purpose
A Ladder of Abstraction
For Concept

Increasingly more abstract

Business Researchers:
Operate at Two Level
 Abstract level: the level of knowledge
expressing a concept that exist only as an
 Concept
 Prepositions
 Empirical level: level of knowledge
reflecting that which is verifiable
 Variable
 hypothesis
 Abstract Level
 In theory Development, the level of knowledge
expressing a concept that exists only as an
idea or a quality apart from an object

 Empirical Level
 Level of Knowledge reflecting that which is
verifiable by experience or observation
Abstract Level
 Concepts abstract reality
 Preposition are statements concerned with
the relationships among concepts
Concepts are Abstraction of

Empirical Observation of Objects and Events (Reality)

Understanding Concepts
 The success of research begins on:
 How clearly we conceptualize
 How well others understand the concept we
Theory Building: A Process
of Increasing Abstraction
Hypothesis and Variable
 A hypothesis is a proposition that is
empirically testable. It is an empirical
statement concerned with the relationship
among variables
 A Variable is anything that may assume
different values
The Role of Hypothesis
 Guides the Direction of the study
 Identify Facts that are relevant
 Suggest which form of research design is
 Provide a framework for organizing the
conclusion based on results
What is Good Hypothesis
 A good hypothesis should fulfill three
 Must be adequate for its purpose
 Must be Testable
 Must be better than its rivals