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Hypotheses in Marketing Science: Literature Review and Publication Audit

Author

Listed:
  • JS Armstrong

    (The Wharton School - University of Pennsylvania)

  • Roderick J. Brodie

    (University of Auckland, New Zealand)

  • Andrew G. Parsons

    (University of Auckland, New Zealand)

Abstract

We examined three approaches to research in marketing: exploratory hypotheses, dominant hypothesis, and competing hypotheses. Our review of empirical studies on scientific methodology suggests that the use of a single dominant hypothesis lacks objectivity relative to the use of exploratory and competing hypotheses approaches. We then conducted a publication audit of over 1,700 empirical papers in six leading marketing journals during 1984-1999. Of these, 74% used the dominant hypothesis approach, while 13 % used multiple competing hypotheses, and 13% were exploratory. Competing hypotheses were more commonly used for studying methods (25%) than models (17%) and phenomena (7%). Changes in the approach to hypotheses since 1984 have been modest; there was a slight decrease in the percentage of competing hypotheses to 11%, which is explained primarily by an increasing proportion of papers on phenomena. Of the studies based on hypothesis testing, only 11 % described the conditions under which the hypotheses would apply, and dominant hypotheses were below competing hypotheses in this regard. Marketing scientists differed substantially in their opinions about what types of studies should be published and what was published. On average, they did not think dominant hypotheses should be used as often as they were, and they underestimated their use.

Suggested Citation

  • JS Armstrong & Roderick J. Brodie & Andrew G. Parsons, 2004. "Hypotheses in Marketing Science: Literature Review and Publication Audit," General Economics and Teaching 0412013, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpgt:0412013
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 15
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    File URL: http://econwpa.repec.org/eps/get/papers/0412/0412013.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Deirdre N. McCloskey & Stephen T. Ziliak, 1996. "The Standard Error of Regressions," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(1), pages 97-114, March.
    2. Robert Goldfarb, 1995. "The economist-as-audience needs a methodology of plausible inference," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 2(2), pages 201-222.
    3. Raymond Hubbard & JS Armstrong, 2005. "Replications and Extensions in Marketing – Rarely Published But Quite Contrary," General Economics and Teaching 0502051, EconWPA.
    4. Wells, William D, 1993. " Discovery-Oriented Consumer Research," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(4), pages 489-504, March.
    5. Koehler, Jonathan J., 1993. "The Influence of Prior Beliefs on Scientific Judgments of Evidence Quality," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 28-55, October.
    6. Ian I. Mitroff, 1972. "The Myth of Objectivity OR Why Science Needs a New Psychology of Science," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 18(10), pages 613-618, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. JS Armstrong, 2004. "Should We Redesign Forecasting Competitions?," General Economics and Teaching 0412001, EconWPA.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    marketing; marketing research; marketing science;

    JEL classification:

    • A - General Economics and Teaching

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