Unveiling TM practices in developing countries
Çetindamar, Dilek and Pretorius, Tinus (2010) Unveiling TM practices in developing countries. (Accepted/In Press)
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The management literature acknowledges the dominance of the US-based theories in management research across the globe. This general dominance is not studied for different sub-disciplines of management at the empirical level, with few exceptions such as a study carried out for organizational studies (Usdiken and Pasadeos, 1995). Such a lack is also observed for the technology management (TM) literature even though the TM discipline has a history of almost 50 years. There are a number of intellectual reasons why this is an interesting research theme. Understanding the dominance of developed country-based theory might help researchers to discover the conditions and the dynamics involved in the transfer of theoretical orientations and most importantly the implications of the dominance at the practical level. If literature is dominated with the US-based theory, what are its implications for researchers around the world? Is there really convergence of theories due to their being universal observations of capitalist economical and industrial infrastructures in developing and developed countries? If they converge, this might not necessarily mean that all economies, different cultures, countries resemble each other, however. The similarity might be because theoretical outlets such as management journals might not accept out-of-the-norm papers in this field, limiting the development of distinct technology management literature arising from the actual needs of developing country managers. If they do not converge, it is of great importance to understand the differences in theory and practice of these theories in different country contexts. Cross-cultural researchers believe that there is no such thing as a universal theory of management. Meta-theoretical assumptions supporting US-based management theories and practices have not been questioned, particularly in regards to their deployment in non-Western contexts. In addition, the emphasis of research on "cultural differences" imply "separation", which would also conceal other social and cultural formations established through global relationships. These arguments remain subjective as long as there are not enough data comparatively investigating the developments in the literature. Although research has made important contributions towards the understanding of TM practices in developing countries, both theoretical and empirical research is required in order to develop a better understanding. That is why this special issue is focused on TM in developing countries.
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