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On the Ontology of Events in Demographies of Organizations


  • Brons, Lajos


Demographies of organizations apply demographic methods to study change in populations of organizations. There are (at least) five relatively independent demographies of organizations. All of these have to deal with the same conceptual and theoretical problems that are mainly the result of the biological analogies on which they are based. All of these demographies lack a clear and consistent conceptual framework. Such a framework could not only help solve these conceptual problems, but would also improve the possibility of knowledge exchange between the different fields. Ontology is – among others – the scientific field that specifies such conceptual frameworks. Besides introducing and explaining this type of ontology, this paper proposes an ontology of events in the demographies of organizations. Eight basic types of vital events can be distinguished and are defined by means of symbolic logic and set theory: founding, termination, split-off, take-over, split-up, merger, essential change, and population transfer. All other types of events are either supertypes or are non-vital events. Non-vital events can be transformed into population transfer events. All demographies of organizations share these events, this ontology.

Suggested Citation

  • Brons, Lajos, 2004. "On the Ontology of Events in Demographies of Organizations," MPRA Paper 1610, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2006.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:1610

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Baldwin, John R. & Beckstead, Desmond & Girard, Andree, 2002. "The Importance of Entry to Canadian Manufacturing with an Appendix on Measurement Issues," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2002189e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    2. Reynolds, Paul D., 1987. "New firms: Societal contribution versus survival potential," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 231-246.
    3. Matthew Barnes & Jonathan Haskel, 2002. "Job Creation, Job Destruction and the Contribution of Small Businesses: Evidence for UK Manufacturing," Working Papers 461, Queen Mary University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
    4. Brons, Lajos, 2005. "Rethinking the Culture - Economy Dialectic," MPRA Paper 1625, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. L·szlÛ PÛlos & Michael T. Hannan, 2002. "Foundations of a theory of social forms," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(1), pages 85-115, February.
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    More about this item


    ontology; taxonomy; events; demography; organizations; firms; households;

    JEL classification:

    • B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology

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