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Philosophical Assumptions and Research Methods in Management

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Introduction: Philosophical Foundations of Management Research Methods

This study aims to reveal a detailed analysis of the philosophical assumptions on management research and critical discussion on ontological, epistemological, axiological, and paradigmatic foundations of management research. It also reveals the discussion of three research methods. Epistemology is an arm of philosophy that examines and donates knowledgeable theories by bearing in mind nature along with the definition of understanding. These have been true abiding by some limitations. Ontology is defined by the environment of being and the organizations which exist in the form of different groups as well as divisions.

Philosophical assumptions of management research

There are mainly four philosophical assumptions of management research and they are ontology, epistemology, axiological, and paradigmatic. These are the different sets of philosophical assumptions and it has different interpretations in the management research. It also determines and discusses the various possibilities of these things which are related to the methodologies like interpretation, being positive, and multilateralism (Van and Struwig, 2017). Moreover, more ways or methods have also been derived from the enthusiasm based on various experiments, questions, surveys as well as organized structured interviews. While the demonstrative stand has been associated with the methods related to theme-based structures, unorganized interviews, and discussions along with ethnography (Cooke, 2018). Ontology, Epistemology, paradigmatic, and Axiology, all these classifications of the philosophical assumptions or rather methods address the information and knowledge related to the public and the society (Webster, 2017). These also include the valuables regarding the researches as well the conducted theories required for the researches.

Ontology is a branch of philosophy that determines and deals with the facts of human nature existing as an individual. The key questions have been about the identification of themselves as well as identifying the fact for which they exist. Ontology is actually an explicit specification of the process of conceptualization and it is a systematic account of the existence. For example, artificial intelligence, in which what exists is not a real living thing but it exists as a conceptualization and using this robotics humans can be replaced from a work (Bell, Kothiyal and Willmott, 2017). The reproving idealism prospects a particular position by including the reality of the existence of an outside World with considerable doubts about the recognition of these facts by human beings. Realism states about the observance of the actual and the real world. In terms of condemning realism, the admittance of personage uncertainties to the world is captured approximately. In conflict with idealism, realism reflects reality. A good example is the movie 'I Robot' where there was a robot named Sony and he was very sophisticated as he was successful in figuring out the reason and the process in which he was made as well as the purpose for making him. Robotics actually covers up the realism and idealism achieves the greater impact and it is the fact that realism shows reality and idealism shows fake reality. Epistemology is a division of philosophy dealing with the study of information and knowledge by asking some classical and important questions. The theorists have various assumptions of information that have not yet been discovered or have been enclosed and constant. Moreover, it has been a belief of the researcher about the development of knowledge-based on the way of perceiving the outside world through their happenings. Axiology is the division of philosophy that determines certain facts by asking questions regarding the value of a particular point or the valuables required for the guidance of particular research (Rahi, 2017). Paradigmatic philosophical assumption which is actually the basic set of assumed facts of the real facts and the appropriate methods of dealing with the reality facts. Moreover, these also question the resulting outcomes and the values of specific research. It also provokes whether the research is conducted impartially or whether the research gets affected by someone's personal opinions as well as worth. It also seeks for the implementations for making changes in the world as well as the social and public changes for the betterment of the world.

Research Methods

The main research methods are or the research approaches are the quantitative approach, qualitative approach, and reflexive approach (Ramoglou and Tsang, 2017). These are the main research methodologies which can be used by the researcher in researches.

The quantitative approach is also known as a deductive approach and it usually recounts the theory created based on the proper observance of the actual world. From these various methods of performing research different surveys, sampling and experiments, and observations (Rahi, 2017). The process of learning including various theories on elements, postulations, generalization, and observation, and at a few points creation of hypotheses is also required to be done by the researcher depending on the various theories (Ramoglou and Tsang, 2017). These figures are out the definite subject and related to the research. Thus, provides the possibility of developing a verifiable generalization for the adoption of the theories (Rahi, 2017).

Qualitative Approach is a method or approach through which qualitative data collection through different methods and the proper analysis of these data occurs. Based on these, various methods of research can be derived for example ethnography, phenomenology, field research, grounded theory and case study, and so on (Vildåsen, Keitsch and Fet, 2017). Through these things, the research can be completed in a quantitative manner and these things help in turn to understand and analyse the deep rooted theories and to make hypothesis and can lead the research in proper way (Monaghan, Lavelle and Gunnigle, 2017).

Reflexive Approach is mainly the contextual approach in the qualitative approach and in this method it explains clearly about the relationships between the participants of the research and the researcher (Monaghan, Lavelle and Gunnigle, 2017). This reflexivity approach enhances the credibility, validity and reliability of the study.


Thus it can be concluded by saying that there are various kinds of methods and methodologies related to the philosophy and the different types of assumptions related to management research, consisting of the discussions on ontological, epistemological, axiological and paradigmatic foundations of management research along with their purposes and process of usage. Moreover, there exist different types of research approaches like qualitative, quantitative, reflexive, and reflective. Among these approaches, the qualitative, quantitative, and reflective approaches have been discussed in detail consisting of the various steps and aims of these approaches.


Bell, E., Kothiyal, N. and Willmott, H., 2017. Methodology?as?Technique and the meaning of rigour in globalized management research.British Journal of Management, 28(3), pp.534-550.https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/1467-8551.12205

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