A New Taxonomy for Developing and Testing Theories



Colquitt and Zapata-Phelan [1] developed taxonomy for classifying empirical studies depending on whether a theory to be tested was nascent or mature. They also thought that one and the same theory to be tested could contain parts from both nascent and mature theories. In this paper we separated development of the theory to be tested from its empirical test. We found that development of the theory can be grounded on data or earlier theoretical concepts and their relationships. We also differentiated the first test of the new theory from its repetitive test. Based on those building blocks we succeeded to build a new taxonomy for theory building and testing. We shall also show how our taxonomy can be strengthened by formative validity and summative validity and can be extended by taking dissensus into account.


Management Journal Theoretical Development Theory Testing Theory Building Inductive Model 


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of TampereTampereFinland

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