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Indicação de Leitura: Recommendations for Creating Better Concept Definitions...

Recommendations for Creating Better Concept Definitions in the Organizational, Behavioral, and Social Sciences.

Organizational Research Methods, vol. 19, n. 2, 159-203, 2016.

Texto completo: PDF

Philip M. Podsakoff

Scott B. MacKenzie

Nathan P. Podsakoff

Despite the importance of establishing good, clear concept definitions in organizational research, the field lacks a comprehensive source that explains how to effectively develop and articulate a concept’s domain. Thus, the purpose of this article is to explain why clear conceptual definitions are essential for scientific progress and provide a concrete set of steps that researchers can follow to improve their conceptual definitions. First, we define what is meant by a concept, describe the functions served by concepts in scientific endeavors, and identify problems associated with a lack of conceptual clarity. Then we explain why it is so difficult to adequately define concepts. Next, we provide a series of recommendations for scholars in the organizational, behavioral, and social sciences who are either trying to define a new concept or revise the definition of one that already exists in the field. Following this, we provide some examples that generally meet the criteria for a good conceptual definition. We conclude with a set of questions that authors, reviewers, and editors can use as a guide for evaluating concept definitions.


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