Improving generalizations from multi-country comparisons in international business research
In this paper we address the problem of questionable generalizations from comparing small numbers of countries in international business (IB) research. We illustrate the misleading results that can arise from sparse samples, whether the relationship between national-level variables is strong (economic development and corruption) or weak (population density and trust). We show that 35% of recent international comparisons in leading IB journals examined just two or three countries, and present an exploratory analysis of 123 variables that reveals typical correlations across countries to be rather moderate (average r=0.24). To help interpret extant study findings, we provide formulas and graphs based on Bayesian analysis, and introduce a method of combining results from multiple international comparisons. We also describe methods for designing studies to give stronger evidence of relationships between variables. Our results suggest that a minimum of 7–10 countries may support credible international generalizations, but only when overall trends are very strong. A key strategy for improving IB generalizations is to use larger samples of countries, because research based on common sample and effect sizes may lead to generalizations that the findings do not justify.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 41 (2010)
Issue (Month): 8 (October)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.palgrave-journals.com/|
|Order Information:|| Postal: Palgrave Macmillan Journals, Subscription Department, Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire RG21 6XS, UK|
Web: http://www.palgrave-journals.com/pal/subscribe/index.html Email:
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pal:jintbs:v:41:y:2010:i:8:p:1275-1293. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Iulia Badea)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.